Category: Make Your Own


Tonight’s dinner got rave reviews!

I’ve been craving turkey, just not all the work, so I bought a frozen Butterball white and dark turkey roast.  I rubbed the frozen roast down with a chicken rub (from Stonewall Kitchens) and put it in the crock pot with some pieces of onion (about 1/2 C.) and about 1/2 C. white wine, and cooked on high for 3 hours and then low for about 2.  The cooking directions said 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low.  I was just looking for an internal temperature of 170F.  When it was done, I removed the string (they come wrapped in string to hold it together) and shredded it,  leaving it in all the juice to stay warm while I roasted some veggies in the oven.  It soaked up all the juices and was moist and delicious.  The boys said it was the best turkey they’ve had in a long time.

Fresh Market sells veggie skewers with red peppers, portobello mushrooms, zucchini, and yellow squash.  I pulled them off the skewers and laid them out in baking dishes.  I also had a bag of mini Yukon gold potatoes that I cut in half and a head of cauliflower I broke apart and placed in baking dishes.  I sprinkled everything with a new Saltopia salt blend I got  called Maui Wauwie, some garlic powder, a little of the chicken rub, and drizzled grapeseed oil over everything.  Bake at 400F for 45 minutes.

There were NO LEFTOVERS except a little turkey.  It was that good.  I will buy more turkey roasts in the future!

20200622_205203 I used the same dough as the pierogies I made recently. The filling is beef and lactose free cottage cheese.

Dough:

2 1/2 C. bread flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 c. plain Kite Hill almond yogurt (the original recipe called for sour cream)

1 large egg and 1 large egg yolk

Whisk dry ingredients in stand mixer.  Add in yogurt and eggs and run with dough hook about 8 minutes.  Sticky, sticky, elastic dough.

Wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour (I refrigerated it overnight)

Filling:

1/2 c. ground meat

1/2 c. cottage cheese (or ricotta) I used Lactaid cottage cheese

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. seasoned salt

2 tsp. Italian seasoning

3 Tbsp. pesto

1 c. vegan mozzarella style shreds

Cook meat and add seasonings.  Add cheeses and pesto.  Simmer until shreds melt.

Refrigerate for use later.  Must be cold or your dough will melt.

Assembly and cooking:

Line baking sheet with parchment and dust with flour.

Roll out dough and cut into 3 inch circles.

Place 1 tsp. filling on each circle.  I tended to overfill, and still had filling left over that I will freeze and add in to my next lasagna.

Seal as  you would an empanada in half moons and set aside on the prepared baking sheet.

I refrigerated them until I prepared the rest of the meal.

I prepared a marinara sauce in a large skillet on one burner and boiled some water with salt and garlic in a large dutch oven on another.

Boil the ravioli in two batches until they float (about 4-5 minutes) and use a slotted spoon to place in the marinara, turning to coat evenly.   It stays warm nicely in the large skillet until serving.

I will admit this is more work that I’m usually in the mood for – but sooooo worth it!

 

 

We love cornbread and we love chili.  The two of them together is a definite winner!

Cook the chili in the crockpot, and bake the cornbread about 1 1/2 hours before you want to serve the casserole.

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Combine:

2 lb. cubed pork (use any meat, or even plant based “meat”)

1 jar Newman’s Own Pineapple Salsa (any salsa will do)

1 can black beans, drained

1 can white kidney beans, drained

Place in crockpot and cook on low 8-10 hours, or high 4-5 hours.  Keep warm until the cornbread is baked.

Spray 13 x 9 baking dish with cooking spray.  Preheat oven to 350 F.

Combine the following:

2 boxes Jiffy cornbread mix

3 eggs

1 can creamed corn

1 can whole kernel corn, drained

1/2 c. almond milk

3 Tbsp. honey

Stir until blended.  Pour into prepared baking dish and bake until golden, about 40 minutes.

Pour chili over cornbread, and sprinkle with shredded cheese.

I used 1 c. Daiya mozzarella style shreds.

Bake another 20 minutes until cheese is melted.

Serve topped with sour cream.

Back before everyone was suddenly into baking bread during quarantine, I happened across an amazing and easy peasant bread recipe on alexandracooks.com.  It caught my eye because it said No-Knead.  I followed Alexandra’s basic peasant bread recipe.  However, instead of making two smaller loaves, I make one big loaf in a pyrex bowl that has a capacity of 2 Qts.

I also like to experiment with different flours and add ins.  However, after binge-watching hours of British Baking Show, be warned that any deviation from the basic recipe can change proofing time.   Today’s experiment was a success!  The best bread I’ve ever made!

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4 C. flour (I used 3 c. AP, 1/2 c. flaxseed meal, 1/2 c. millet flour)

2 tsp. salt

2 c. tepid water

2 tsp. sugar

2 tsp. yeast (I used Fleischmann’s Active Dry Yeast)

2 Tbsp. butter.  I wasn’t good about taking pictures.  They all started to look the same LOL.

First Place flour in large bowl and wisk in salt.

Boil water (you will need 1/2 c. boiling with 1 1/2 c. tap water to get “tepid water”)

I melt the sugar in the boiled water in a large mixing cup before adding in the tap water to make sure the sugar is dissolved.  (I actually forgot to do that today, and it still turned out okay).

Sprinkle water with yeast and let activate for 15 minutes.

Stir into flour/salt mixture until no pockets of flour remain.  Cover with plastic wrap and proof about 1 hour.  It should be doubled in size.

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Meanwhile, get the bowl(s) you will be baking the bread in ready by spreading butter over it’s entire inner surface.

Deflate proofed dough using two small forks, pulling dough in from the sides of the bowl onto itself.  It is really sticky and hard to scrape from the sides.  That’s normal.

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Put is into the bowl you are baking it in (just sort of plop it in there) and use a spatula or metal spoon to get as much of the dough out of the original bowl as possible.  You won’t want to waste any of it.  Trust me.

Preheat oven to 425F.

Sit bowl of dough on the stovetop where the heat comes out of the oven.  Let the dough have a second proof (about 20 minutes).  It will double in size again!

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Place bowl in the 425F oven for 15 minutes.  Reduce heat to 375F and cook 15-17 minutes more.

Immediately turn the bread out onto a cooling rack.

The video from Alexandracooks.com is great:

My Mother’s Peasant Bread: The Best Easiest Bread You Will Ever Make

 

 

 

Tonight’s dinner was such a hit, the boys said to write down what I did differently so I can recreate it!  One part I don’t want to recreate is having a stove that only has one working burner (a small one) and an oven (no broiler).  I didn’t really know that some of the minor changes I made would make it so much better, so I didn’t take pictures as I went along.  It was, however, pretty, so I took a picture of a serving of the finished product.

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1 lb. elbow macaroni

2 Tbsp. minced garlic

2 tsp. seasoned salt

1 8 oz. container vegan or lactose free cream cheese

1 large sweet onion, finely chopped

1 C. finely chopped turkey ham

4 Tbsp. butter

1 Tbsp. grapeseed oil

2 tsp. Italian seasoning

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. seasoned salt

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 c. leftover roasted (charred) broccoli, finely chopped

1 pouch vegan mozzarella style shreds

Cook elbow macaroni.  I use the Alton Brown method of putting the pasta in a large pan with enough cool water to cover it by about an inch.  Stir in minced garlic and seasoned salt.  Bring to a boil and stir occasionally.  Lower the heat to medium low and the pasta basically becomes rehydrated instead of boiled.  Because I’m dealing with only one burner, once the pasta was cooked, I placed it in a 13 x 9 lasagna dish sprayed with coconut oil.  Rather than draining off all the fabulous flavored pasta water, I spooned approximately 1/4 to 1/2 cup into the baking dish with the pasta.

Next, I cooked the onion and ham in butter and oil with all the seasonings over low heat for about 25 minutes.  I turned it up at the end, and added in the chopped charred broccoli.   Add in cream cheese and melt through.

Pour over noodles and mix in.  Top with shreds and bake at 350F for 30 minutes.

I’m not sure what made this better than usual.  Maybe the pasta was perfectly cooked and had just enough pasta water?  Maybe the charred flavor of the broccoli added a special touch.  Whatever it was, I’m going to try to recreate this to see if it can be done!

Oh, and this was the last meal I’m preparing on my old on its last legs stove.  Tomorrow my son is installing the stove I always wanted.  It’s a combination Birthday/Mother’s Day present.  I can’t wait!

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If you’ve followed my blog at all, you know we develop favorites which end up on the menu at least once every week or so.  Right now, Kimchi Fried Rice is that favorite!  This recipe makes a lot, but the leftovers go quickly!

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1 lb. thick sliced bacon (I used Greenfield Farms Thick Cut Applewood Bacon)

1 C. kimchi (I used Wildbrine Korean Kimchi)

8 c. cooked rice (I used Lundberg Farms Wildblend Rice)

12 eggs

I start the rice cooking first.  Meanwhile, I cook the bacon in oven at 350.  I use two 13 x 9 baking dishes which will be used to cook the fried rice later.  It takes about 20 minutes.  I take it out and turn it several times.  Before cooking the rice in the oven, turn up heat to 400.

Place the cooked bacon on sheet pan lined with paper towels to absorb the grease.  The Greenfield Farms bacon was surprisingly lean!  Pour the bacon grease from the baking dishes into the rice that is cooking and set the backing dishes aside.  The residue of the bacon grease in the dish makes the rice crisp up nicely.

 

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I cut up the bacon and chop up the kimchi and put in a bowl together to put in the rice when it’s done.

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I also put the eggs in little dishes to enable me to quickly pour them into the rice to cook in the oven.

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Once the rice is cooked, mix in the bacon, kimchi mixture.  Spoon into the two reserved backing dishes with the bacon grease residue.

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Spread out evenly, and make six wells for the eggs in each baking dish.  Put in the 400 oven for 10 minutes.   Do not put the eggs in yet!  Bake for 10 minutes to get the rice piping hot.  This will help the egg whites to cook quicker.

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Once baking dishes are really hot, pull from the oven and put eggs in the wells.  Return to the oven for 7 minutes.

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That’s it!  Top with siracha, if you like it hot.

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So, I am definitely on an empanada kick.  They are something everyone loves!  I had some leftover mashed potatoes and was looking for inspiration as to how to use up the leftovers.  Pirogi recipes kept popping up, but they require more steps than I was up to doing, what with the boiling and then pan frying.  I decided to make an empanada pierogi fusion!  Leftover mashed potatoes, onions and crumbled sausage, vegan cheese, and viola!

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2 packages frozen empanada dough (I used Goya)

4 C. leftover mashed potatoes

1 large onion, finely chopped

1 lb. sausage (I used apple sausage)

2 Tbsp. oil (I used grapeseed)

1 package vegan cheddar style shredds (I used Daiya)

1 egg, beaten for egg wash

Set frozen empanada dough out to thaw.  The Goya type below is my favorite.  The discs are separated by plastic sheets and are not too fragile.  They don’t fit my empanada press, though, so I have to seal them by hand.

tapas-para-empandas

Prepare large sheet pan by coating with cooking spray.

Saute onion in oil over low heat until softened, and add in sausage.  Drain well and crumble.

Add in mashed potatoes and cheddar style shredds.

You may want to make the filling ahead since you need to let cool before filling dough.

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One at a time, fill and press empanadas/pierogis.  Preheat oven to 350F.

Place on sheet pan, and brush with egg.

Bake at 350F for 20 minutes or until golden.

I am so loving Goya empanada dough.  So crisp with great lamination.  You can make filling of almost anything.  We like ground meat, vegan crumbles, tofu crumbles, or sausage mixed with onion best.  Sometimes I make it with Korean BBQ, Pizza sauce, Tex Mex style, whatever.  They are always a winner.  We’ve been on a teriyaki ranch kick lately.  They are soooo good together.

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I sauteed onion and browned ground turkey with Chinese five spice and added teriyaki and ranch.  Here are the specifics.  First start with my favorite dough by Goya:

tapas-para-empandas

1 large sweet onion, chopped

2 tsp. seasoning of choice – I used Chinese five spice

2 lb. ground turkey

2 packages empanada dough

Oil to soften onion

3 Tbsp. teriyaki sauce (I used garlic teriyaki)

3 Tbsp. ranch dressing

1-2 tsp. corn starch to thicken

1 packet Daiya Pepper Jack Shredds

1 egg, beaten

The empanada dough has to sit out at room temperature for about an hour before you can use it.

Prepare a large baking sheet ahead by covering it in foil and spraying with cooking spray.

Cook onion, sprinkled with seasoning, in a little oil until softened.  Add in turkey, chopping it up in little pieces as it cooks.

Add in teriyaki, ranch and corn starch.  Simmer until thickened.  Let cool.

Once filling is cool, add in shredds.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Hold dough in the palm of your hand and spoon filling in middle.  Seal edges by pressing between your fingertips.

Lay out on prepared baking sheet.

Brush with beaten egg and bake about 20 minutes until golden brown.

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My sister Sue introduced me to the combination of tuna and pineapple.  I bought some canned tune and crushed pineapple recently to use for lunches during the workweek.  I added  in Korean Kimchi and Pepper Jack Vegan Shredds.  I can’t wait to try this with Ahi seared tuna and fresh pineapple.

 

2 cans light tuna, packed in water, well drained

1 small can crushed pineapple, well drained

2 Tbsp. Garlic Teryaki Sauce

1 Tbsp. Korean Kimchi, drained

Combine ingredients and chill for flavors to marry, at least 20-30 minutes

4 large tortillas

Vegan shredds (I used about 1/4 c. Daiya pepper jack shredds for each quesadilla)

Spray for pan

Heat tortilla until browned on one side.  Flip and top with filling ingredients sprinkled with shredds.

Cook about 1 minute and flip top over.

I love fruit and protein, so this really appealed to me.  I will make it with gourmet ingredients soon. (Using chicken for non fish eaters, or even tofu crumbles fried up with teriyaki sauce would be good.)

My local grocer had russet potatoes on sale for an amazing price.  I bought 10 pounds!  I can’t eat much of them because of my sensitivity to nightshades, but the kids really like the stuffed baked potato skins we had on night one.  I served them with Teriyaki Ranch Chicken Thighs and Roasted Baby Bellas.

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I baked the potatoes a day ahead, so I could work with them cool.   I made 18 potatoes!  I washed them thoroughly, poked them with a fork and baked at 350 F for an hour.

The next day, I scooped out the skins, leaving a little potato and refrigerated the skins again for a while.  I put the scooped out potatoes in a tupperware for mashed potatoes another day.

Brush skins with oil, season with a little seasoned salt and pepper blend, or other seasonings you like, and then sprinkle with cheese (I used vegan cheese) and cooked bacon pieces.

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Meanwhile, I put the chicken in a baking dish, and the baby bellas in another.  The chicken was marinaded and cooked in Giorgio Blendabella Coconut Thai Sauce that was amazing!  I added in some Marsala wine to make it liquidy enough to be a marinade.

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They were simply tossed with oil (I used sunflower) and seasoned salt and pepper blend.  These can be seasoned according to taste.

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It all baked together at 350F for about 40 minutes (chicken with internal temperature of 165F.  I kept checking the food the last 15 minutes or so, and cut the chicken up so it would crisp up.

Then tonight, I made mashed potatoes by ricing the potatoes and adding in melted butter, non-dairy milk, and seasonings.  I just heated them on the stove top while tonight’s Honey Mustard Jalapeno Chicken cooked in the oven.

The Honey Mustard Jalapeno Marinade/Cooking Sauce was made from stuff I had a little of each of in the fridge.  Raspberry Honey Mustard mixed with Jalapeno Pineapple Jam.  No kidding.  Really good.

I served a salad that was a kit from Target’s new line.  Maple, Bourbon, Bacon salad.

Maple Bourbon Bacon Salad Kit

Yummm.  I know it sounds like a lot of different flavors, but they all complemented each other.

Raspberry Honey Mustard Chicken.jpg

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