Our oven died last Sunday. I am investigating replacement. But I wanted pizza tonight. So I tried the covered skillet technique. It was reasonably successful. I need to lower the flame next time.
The process was to per heat a dry skillet, add a frozen pizza, cover, and bake until heated through.
The crust becomes crispy. Mine was a bit overcooked. So, rather than 3/4 flame I will set at about 1/3 flame and cook longer.
1 Cup buttermilk
1 nicely ripened banana
2 TBS peanut butter
1 TBS honey
Put all ingredients into a wide mouthed quart jar. Blitz until smooth with stick blender. Add ice. Drink.
Four Pan Grilled Steaks
1/2 cup diced onion (1/4 dice)
2 Tbs Butter
1/2 cup Southern Comfort
1/2 cup Beef Broth
1/2 cup Heavy Cream
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1. Pan grill steaks to on level below the desired doneness. Place on a tray in a 170° F oven.
2. Place pan in which steaks were grilled over medium heat. Add onions and 1 Tbs of butter. Cook onions while stirring frequently. Cook them past clarifying to the point where the are just beginning to caramelize.
3. Turn off burner. This is important. You don't want to ignite the alcohol fumes. Add Southern Comfort and Beef Broth to the pan. Turn burner back on. Boil while stirring until liquid reduced by half.
4. Add 1 Tbs of Butter. Stir until melted.
5. Add 1/2 cup of Heavy Cream. Boil while stirring until liquid reduced by half.
Serve with steaks.
I had four bananas crying out to be used. They were a bit beyond the stage needed for Bananas Foster. But I liked the idea of a warm cinnamon-y experience. Below is what I ended up doing.
For each serving:
1 multi grain tortilla
Spray appropriately sized baking pan with cooking spray. Divide banana in half and place in center of tortilla. Put 1 Tbs sugar, cinnamon, and butter atop the banana. bring two sides of the tortilla up and over the banana and seasonings. Then fold over the other two sides the tortilla so that all of the filling is encased. Place seam side down in baking pan. Spray bundle with cooking spray. Evenly spread 1tsp sugar on top of bundle.
Repeat as needed.
Bake at 425° F for 30 minutes.
Serve on bowl with pan sauce drizzled over the top.
David and I seldom eat out now. Quite a change from 15 years ago. Here are the reasons why:
1. Initially, David drove 85 miles to get home from work. Eating out made that trip incredibly long as restaurants were at minimum twenty miles from home.
2. The money we might spend on eating out buys an incredible diversity of ingredients that keep our meals interesting.
3. My cooking skills were good 11 years ago when we began not eating out on week nights. But they have improved tremendously with use. This makes meals at home even more interesting.
4. We have fun playing with food. David is an excellent baker. We bounce ideas off of one another. It has become a form of play.
5. We do eat out. But when we do, it is a matter of necessity as in during travel or for pleasure. When we find an establishment that serves good food in a quiet atmosphere, we rejoice. Many are not pricey places. We have found most chains that others rave about to be way too noisy. That makes it hard to converse without shouting.
6. I am not sure eating out is a timesaver. By the time one drives to a restaurant and waits for the service, dinner could be on the table. Cleanup could be done in the time it takes to get home.
7. It is much easier to monitor quantity and quality if food consumed by eating at home.
Well, it was served on Thursday for lunch. But, I am at a model railroad operating session and unable to participate because of this darn leg. So keeping myself busy playing on the internet.
Thursday found me needing to use a chicken breast before we left town for a long weekend. I also needed to cook lunch in less than thirty minutes. George Foreman Grill came to the rescue.
BBQ Glazed Bacon Wrapped Chicken Breasts
1 boneless skinless chicken breast
Cut chicken breast in half horizontally. Sprinkle both sides with "Pinch of This and a Pinch of That". Wrap each piece of chicken with two strips of bacon in a manner that covers all the chicken top and bottom.
Place wrapped pieces on George Foreman grill and cook 9 minutes.
Fried Eggs on Toast with Parmesan Cheese and Jalapeno Sauce
For each serving:
1 slice warm buttered toast
Place egg atop buttered toast. Sprinkle cheese over egg. drizzle with pepper sauce.
* I have been saving cheese rinds to toss into soup. I only needed a small amount of cheese for this dish. I was amazed at how much cheese was available one what I had previously considered a rind. makes me shudder about the amount I have wasted in the past. One can eat well and still be thirfty.
** Comprised of a scant Tablespoin of red pepper puree mixed with 1/4 tsp pureed red jalapenos in vinegar (my way of preserving some of this year's harvest). One could substitute Sriracha sauce for the Jalapenos in Vinegar.
Red Pepper Hummus
1/4 cup Red Pepper Puree*
Mix all ingredients until no lumps appear. let rest 30 minutes. Serve with Tostito brand Artisan Recipe Fire Roasted Chipotle chips.
* puree was made from red bell peppers from our 2011 garden. I roasted the peppers, pureed them, and froze in one cup portions.
** I have found chick pea flour quite handy to have in the pantry. I purchased mine from Amazon. It is a product of Canada and very fresh.
*** This is a product of Heavenly Oils in Kansas City but sesame oils can be found in Asian food stores. You will have to adjust the quantity of oil based on the flavor of the oil you have. I would start out using half of the amount I used and add more if taste warrants more.
Yesterday I tried to make mayonnaise with coconut flavored balsamic vinegar and blood orange olive oil.
Disaster. It never emulsified. I used three eggs attempting to recover it. After and hour of trying I poured the solution into a container to save in the fridge until my sanity had been restored.
After work while thinking an about ingredients to use for dinner, that goop was brought to mind. The mind was apparently in better shape because it said, "You have the equivalent of a hollandaise sauce. Why not apply a bit of heat in the form of the microwave accompanied with some whisking to distribute the temperature evenly to see what you get?"
But I feel so much better now turning that project from fail to prevail!
Scotty Bender was a dear friend of my Mother-in-Law. As a young bride, Scotty was cajoled by her spouse to pack him sandwiches for his lunch to save them money. During a nice spaghetti dinner, He errantly told her, "You can make a sandwich from anything." The next day he had spaghetti sandwiches for lunch. All subsequent business day lunches for him were acquired at nearby restaurants.
Today's lunch was very much in the Bender tradition. Only this lunch was based on the premise that one can make pizza from anything. I had one cup of a tasty fish curry sitting in the fridge. I was trying to figure out an imaginative approach to its use in another meal when David informed me that he was putting the Naan dough in the fridge. Holy Light Bulbs! Today's lunch conception occurred.
6 oz 5 minute a day Naan dough
Preheat over to 450 F.
Roll dough into 12 inch circle. Spread fish curry thinly over dough smashing lumpy bits as you go to cover more area. Scatter pepper evenly over pizza. Do the same with the onion. Evenly cover pizza with gouda and then the asiago. Lastly, sprinkle on the pinenuts.
Place on baking stone in hot oven. Bake Ten minutes turning halfway through. Let rest five minutes after removing from oven.
Serve with chopped cucumbers and chive dip.
Oh, we ate it so greedily we did not get pictures!
David is preparing for a trip to St. Louis to play with other peoples' goodies at the Regional NMRA convention. We packed the few breakfast bars we had left for him to have on the road to save some time and money as well as help keep the calorie load manageable. So, I needed to be creative for breakfast.
1 toasted them buttered English Muffin, the last one left from Cam's visit
Spread chopped liver over English Muffin. Eat. Yum.
But, I should go brush my teeth again!
Creamy Greens and Garlic Soup
Spicy Chicken Taquitos
Grilled Pork Chops
Broccoli with Ranchy Cheeze Sauce
Four Layer Chocolate Cake
I baked chicken breasts earlier in the week. I had one whole breast left over. I have been saving it to do something special with. Well, that's my excuse. I just didn't want to eat a casserole. It would have been lovely in a pot pie, but I couldn't bring myself make a casserole. I like a variety of flavors in a meal and casseroles tend to be homogeneous. So, I struck on this idea.
1 cooked chicken breast finely diced
.5 cup chopped onion
.5 cup minced cilantro
1 tablespoon Louisiana hot sauce
.5 cup grated strong cheddar cheese
6 6-inch tortillas
1 cup cooking oil
1 cup Ranch dressing.
About 1/3 from one side of a tortilla, build a long stack of chicken, onion, cilantro and cheese (use 1/6 of each ingredient on each tortilla). Sprinkle with hot sauce according to your hotness preferences. Fold the end of the tortilla closest to the toppings over the toppings, then fold each side over that. Finally, roll the tortilla over the fillings in an egg roll fashion. Fasten with tooth picks to hold shapes.
Heat oil to just below the smoke point. Fry the tortilla rolls in the hot oil, rotating so that all sides are browned evenly. Once the roll has taken shape, the toothpicks can be removed. When the rolls are done cooking, drain on a paper towel lined plate.
When cool enough to handle, serve with Ranch dressing.
David and I travelled into the big city this morning for the Wichita Model Train Show. Dad Heinsohn joined us. I am amazed at the size of the event. But that is for a different blog.
We took a lunch break at N&J Cafe. Wonderful Lebanese food. I had the appetizer combination plate so that I did not have to choose: kibbe, falafel, cabbage rolls, stuffed grape leaves, hummis, babba gahnosh, and tabbuli. David had a gyro. His dad had Beef Shwarma.
It was nice to get reacquainted with one of Wichita's long standing establishments.
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Salads can be made up in mason jars and held in the refrigerator for several days. The secret is to put the dressing in first so it's on the bottom of the jar. Layer veggies and cooked grains on top of the dressing. The add the greens last so the are on top of the jar. The greens should not ever touch the dressing until just before the salad is eaten. So, the jars will have to remain upright.
Lemon Peach Almond Bread is baking.