Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Roasted Tiny Potatoes

This recipe yields a product that's crusty on the outside and creamy on the inside. Quartering the potatoes doubles the crisp surface area. This easy recipe with limited knife work is well suited for the beginning cook.
12 oz small white or red potatoes (about 1.5 inch across)
2 T olive oil
1 t kosher salt
2 t dry rosemary powder
1/2 t granulated garlic
1/2 t ground black pepper
Quarter the potatoes, place in a bowl, mist with water, cover, and steam in the microwave oven for 3 minutes on high power (1250 W). Preheat the toaster oven to 425 F. Transfer the potatoes to an 8x8-inch metal pan, drizzle on the oil, add the seasonings, toss, and roast for 10 minutes. Flip the potatoes and roast another 10 to 15 minutes.

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Toaster-Oven Garlic Bread

Winter 2023. This approach streamlines an earlier recipe by combining the topping ingredients into a compound spread. Pairs nicely with soup, chowder, or steamed seafood or offer as an appetizer with drinks at a gathering.

8 oz loaf supermarket French bread

1/3 c soft tub margarine
1 t granulated garlic, divided
1/2 c grated parmesan cheese, divided

In a small bowl, mash the margarine with a fork until softened. In two steps, mash in the granulated garlic, and finally, in two steps, the cheese. Preheat the oven on the broil setting with the rack placed 6 to 8 inches from the coils. Cut the loaf into 3/4 inch thick slices. Cover each with a generous layer of spread and arrange on a 12X9 baking sheet. Grill the bread until the top is browned and crisp, about 5 minutes. Serves 2 to 4 depending on the menu. 

Monday, January 2, 2023

Dry Rub for Beef

Developed over many years for steaks and roasts.
2 T kosher salt
1 t black peppercorns
2 t brown sugar
1 t dry rosemary
1 t granulated garlic
1 t mushroom powder
1 t dry thyme
Combine the ingredients in a spice grinder. Pulse a few times to form a fine powder. Store in a tight container. To use, dry the meat, sprinkle the rub on all sides, rub it in, cover in plastic, and marinate up to 24 hours in the refrigerator. Use one teaspoon per pound. 

Thursday, December 29, 2022

Quick Tomato-Lentil Noodle Soup

Turns a BLT or tuna sandwich into a nice supper entirely from pantry ingredients.
4 c water
2 T tomato paste
1 pkg Madras stewed lentils
1 pkg tomato noodle soup mix (Knoll™ is good)
2 T dry onion flakes
1/2 t fennel seeds
1 t dry tarragon
1/4 t crushed red pepper
1/2 t sugar
1 t fish sauce.
Bring the water to boil in a three-quart saucepan. Stir in the tomato paste and lentils. Return to a boil and add the soup mix and the seasonings. Simmer, with occasional stirring, for 8 minutes. Serves 4.

Tuesday, December 13, 2022

Hearty Beef Soup with Mushrooms, Barley, and Black Beans

Developed December, 2022, mostly from pantry ingredients.
1 c (20 g) dry porcini mushrooms
3 T olive oil, divided
6 oz button mushrooms, coarsely chopped
1/2 c carrots, coarsely chopped
1 c onion, coarsely chopped
2 T tomato paste
2 t garlic, minced
1 14.5-oz can Cuban-style black beans (Bush™ is good)
reserved mushroom stock
3 c water
1 T beef stock concentrate (Better than Bouillion™ is good)
1/2 c barley
2 c cabbage, coarsely chopped
1 t salt
1 t sugar
1/2 t ground black pepper
10 oz (300 g) cooked beef steak, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
Rinse the mushrooms briefly and cover with 12 oz of very hot water. Stir and set aside for 30 minutes to hydrate and release their flavor into the soak water. Drain, reserving the liquid and chop them with a few pulses in a small food processor. Do the same for the fresh mushrooms. Heat the oil in a 3-quart saucepan and add the mushrooms. Sauté for a few minutes and then add the chopped carrots. Add more oil as needed to maintain a good sauté. After a few minutes, add the onions and garlic. Fry until onions start to soften. Mix in the beans including the pack water. Add the water, mushroom liquid, and the stock concentrate. Bring to a gentle boil and stir in the barley and cabbage. Cook covered, gently boiling until the cabbage is tender and the barley has swollen, about 20 to 30 minutes. Off heat, stir in the seasonings and beef. Warm through and serve. Rye bread and butter make good sides. Serves 4.

Friday, December 2, 2022

Mignonette Sauce for Shellfish

This simple sauce is the perfect accent for raw, steamed, or broiled seafood.

1/4 c finely-minced shallot
1/4 c red wine vinegar
1/4 c rice wine vinegar
1/4 t cracked peppercorns
1/2 t salt
1 t sugar

Add ingredients to a small bowl or container. Mix well and let stand at least 30 minutes. Spoon small amounts over oysters, clams, mussels, or fish. Keeps well in the refrigerator for a good while.

Saturday, November 26, 2022

Dry Marinade for Pork

Developed over the course of many years. Chops, roasts, ribs, braises all benefit.
2 T kosher salt
2 t fennel seeds
2 t sage
1 t dry thyme
1 t peppercorns
1 t granulated garlic
1 t paprika
1/2 t red pepper flakes
1 t corn starch
Add the components to a spice grinder and process until finely powdered. Store in a shaker jar tightly covered, in the dark. Use about 1 teaspoon for each pound of raw pork rubbed on all surfaces. After seasoning, bag the meat and hold for up to 24 hours below 40 F.

Dorothy's Quick and Easy Corn Chowder

This simple soup has been brought forward from DrDaddy's childhood. His sainted mother was not only a skillful traditonal cook but was also an innovative, resourceful one as well. She fed three hungry kids lunch every day and created quick, easy, healthful dishes on a modest budget. This is a simpler version of a corn and clam chowder presented earlier.

1 15-oz can creamed corn (Del Monte™ is good)
1 can of milk
2 t butter
salt and pepper to taste
Stir the corn and the milk together in a small saucepan. Heat to steaming but do not boil. Stir in the butter and adjust the seasoning. Yields two to three servings. Saltine crackers on the side make a nice addition.

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Catfish Stew

First prepared January, 2008, Catfish nuggets are sold at a lower price than fillets.
2 rashers bacon, diced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 ribs of celery, sliced crosswise
1/2 c sweet red pepper, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
1 t fennel seed
1 t dry tarragon, rubbed
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into large dice
4 c chicken stock
1/4 c minced parsley
2 lbs catfish nuggets, cut into bite-size pieces
1 c milk or light cream
tapioca or corn starch suspended in a little cold water
2 t salt
1 t freshly ground pepper
sliced green onions to garnish
In a large heavy pot, over medium heat saute the bacon until crisp. Add onions, celery, and carrots, and stir. Cook with occasional stirring until they begin to color. Add the peppers and herbs. When soft, add potatoes and broth. Return to a low boil and simmer 20 minutes, adding the parsley after 10 minutes. Add the fish and return to simmer for 5 minutes. Do not boil. Add the milk, raise the heat to low boil and add the starch suspension gradually with stirring until the stew is somewhat thickened. Adjust seasoning. Ladle into bowls and garnish with green onions. With hot crusty bread and butter, serves 6 to 8.

Sunday, November 13, 2022

Poultry Rub

Use on whole chickens, turkeys, or parts before roasting or grilling.

2 T kosher salt
1 t peppercorns
1 t coriander seeds
1 t dry rosemary leaves
1 t dry sage leaves
1 t dry oregano leaves
1 t dry thyme leaves
1 t dry tarragon leaves
1 t granulated garlic
Combine the ingredients in a spice grinder and process until fine. Rinse the poultry in cold water, dry thoroughly, oil the skin, and season all sides with a 1 teaspoon per pound. Store tightly covered. 

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Mexican-Style Pickled Carrots

ften found on the condiment bar at taquerias, this piquant treat comes together quickly from mostly pantry ingredients. H/T Ben.
1 lb (450 g) carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch (5 cm) lengths
2 large jalapeños, sliced diagonally
3 garlic cloves crushed
6 oz (175 ml) white vinegar
6 oz (175 ml) water
2 t (10 ml) vegetable oil
2 bay leaves
6 black peppercorns
1 t (5 ml) dry oregano
1 t (5 ml) salt
To a three-quart saucepan, add the garlic, vinegar, water, oil, bay leaves, peppercorns, oregano, and salt. Bring to a boil and add the carrots, onion and jalapeños. Lower the heat to a fast simmer and cook for 15 minutes, uncovered. Transfer to a quart mason jar or divide between 2 pints. If more liquid is needed to cover the vegetables, add equal parts water and white vinegar. Tighten lid and allow to cool to room temperature before refrigerating. Ready to eat after 3 hours but better if pickled for a day or two. Note: If using baby carrots, boil for 3 minutes before lowering heat to a simmer.

Sunday, September 4, 2022

Quick Rice and Lentil Soup with Poached Egg

A warm bowl of soup makes a satisfying breakfast or lunch dish. This one comes together quickly from pantry ingedients.
1/3 c long grain rice
1 T olive oil
2 T tomato paste
2-1/2 c water
2 T beef or vegetable stock concentrate
1 foil pack Madras lentils
1 t fish sauce (optional)
1/2 t sugar
1/4 t salt
2 oz frozen leaf spinach
1 large egg
Heat the oil in a two-quart saucepan, add the rice, stir and fry a few minutes until lightly colored. Stir in the water, tomato paste, stock concentrate, sugar, salt and fish sauce. Bring to a gentle boil for 10 minutes with occasional stirring. Mix in the lentils, cook for 5 minutes more, and then stir in the frozen spinach. When it's bubbling hot again, move off heat, crack in the egg, cover and wait 4 minutes while it poaches. Then, stir the egg into the soup and serve, 2 or 3 as a light breakfast or lunch. 

Monday, August 29, 2022


Developed Summer, 2022 from online examples.

1/2 c butter (1 stick)

1 c white sugar  

2 eggs 

1 t vanilla extract 

1/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder 

1/2 c all-purpose flour 

1/4 t salt 

1/4 t baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C). Grease and flour an 8-inch square pan. In a medium bowl, melt 1/2 cup butter in the microwave.  When cool, whisk in the sugar and then the eggs and the vanilla. Beat in the cocoa, the flour, salt, and baking powder. Spread batter into prepared pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Do not overbake. Variation: Sprinkle 1/2 cup chocolate chips uniformly on top before baking.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Where did the name 'DrDaddy' come from?

Recorded October 5, 2021. From family history. Many years ago, our family was friendly with another family, a man, a woman, and two teenage kids. The mother had a brother named Steve. The kids were told to call him "Uncle Steve" which they did. One day when Steve was visiting them, he told them he was proud to have just finished his medical residency. He now thought of himself as a 'real' doctor. He told the kids not to call him Uncle Steve anymore but to now address him as Uncle Doctor Steve. His specialty? Psychiatry of course. So the gag in my family became that I would, in view of my doctorate in science, insist my kids call me Doctor Daddy. They never call me that, fact is, they hardly ever call!

Sunday, July 17, 2022

Pork Loin Roast, Sous Vide Method

Sous Vide Roast Pork Loin
Prepared according to the procedures recommended by son Ben. The dry rub is mine. 

about 1.5 lb pork loin
about 3 T vegetable oil

Dry Rub

2 T kosher salt
2 t granulated garlic
2 t fennel seed
1 t dry thyme
1 t peppercorns
1 t paprika
1 t sage
1 t dry rosemary
Process the above ingredients in a spice grinder about 20 seconds until fine, and store in an air-tight container. Lightly rinse the pork loin and dry thoroughly with paper towels. With a sharp knife cut away most of the fat cap. Rub all the surfaces with the spice mixture, using 1 tablespoon of dry rub per pound (15 ml per 450 g). Prepare a water bath fitted with a heating circulator set to 137 F (58 C). Put the meat in a twist-tie plastic bag and force the air out by the displacement method. The thin wall facilitates squeezing the air out. Tie a tight knot at the top of the bag taking care not to let air back in. Lower the bag into the water gently. Add hot tap water, if needed, to bring the level to the maximum permitted by the circulator. Cover the pot with plastic wrap to limit evaporation. Process for 4 hours. When the time is up, remove the roast from the bag and reserve the juice rendered during cooking. Dry the surface thoroughly. Heat a stainless skillet over medium high, add the oil, and then the roast. Brown it on all sides, turning with tongs. Pour the reserved drippings over the meat. Slice thinly and serve.

Friday, February 4, 2022

Hush Puckies

Batch of Hush Puckies on Paper Towel
Developed Summer, 2021. The stiff batter is first formed into balls by hand, then flattened, and then fried on both sides in shallow oil. Shaped like hockey pucks, they are 'hush puckies' in place of deep-fried round hush puppies. 
1 c hush puppy mix with onion (House-Autry™ is good)
1 or 2 T sugar
1 t granulated onion
1/2 c water
1 T vegetable oil 
1/2 c fry oil
Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl and then stir in the water, then the oil, until all are incorporated. Let stand 30 minutes in the refrigerator to hydrate and firm up. Add the fry oil to a 10-inch non-stick skillet (about 1/4  inch deep) and heat slowly to 350 F. Form a batch of four 1-inch balls, flatten to a 2-inch diameter, and place in the oil. Fry about two minutes until browned on edges, turn over and fry another minute or so until browned on both sides. Drain on paper towels, keep warm in a warm oven, and fry another batch. Pairs nicely with pulled pork, fried fish, or seafood. Makes about 10 pucks.

Sub Salad

This salad represents the vegetable toppings from our hot sub sandwiches served as a side salad.
2 c finely-shredded iceburg lettuce
1 oz thinly-sliced red onion
1 oz sliced pepperoncini
4 oz ripe tomato, cut in large dice
1 oz sub sandwich vinaigrette
Combine the first four ingredients in a bowl. Drizzle on the dressing and toss gently to combine. Serve at once. Serves two.

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Cranberry Sauce with Mandarin Oranges

Developed on T-Day 2021, using canned mandarins, when it was discovered that DrDaddy had no fresh oranges on hand. Half the sugar comes from the "light" syrup.

1 15-oz can mandarin oranges in light syrup
1 12-oz bag fresh or frozen cranberries
1/2 c granulated sugar
1/8 t table salt
Empty the entire can of oranges into a three-quart saucepan. Break into small pieces with a potato masher. Add the berries, sugar, and salt. Place over high heat, bring to a boil. Mix constantly with the masher. When the berries start to pop, lower the heat to medium and cook about five minutes, mashing and stirring from time to time. When the cranberries are mostly broken up, cover tightly and set aside to cool. Do not disturb or the pectin network will be disrupted and the sauce won't properly gel and will be watery.

Monday, November 8, 2021

Easy Cheese Biscuits

Developed Fall, 2021. The unbaked biscuits keep for months in the fridge and bake in less than 20 minutes. Freshly-baked cheese biscuits and a warm bowl of split pea soup make a comforting cold-weather meal.
8 large refrigerator biscuits (Pillsbury Flaky Layers™ work well)
1/2 c finely-shredded sharp cheddar (Kraft™ works well)
2 T melted butter (optional)
1 t coarse sea salt (optional)
Preheat a toaster oven to 375 F. Pull a biscuit from the stack and carefully split it in half. Sprinkle a tablespoon of cheese on one half, top with the other half, and press the edges together to seal in the cheese. Arrange on a 12 inch baking pan on a 3-2-3 layout. Brush tops with melted butter and sprinkle on a little salt (optional). Bake 17 to 18 minutes until tops are golden brown. Lift biscuits off pan while warm with a thin spatula. Let cool until safe to eat. To store extra, wrap tightly in plastic film and freeze.

Sunday, August 1, 2021

Five-Minute Onion Jam

Onions Simmering in Oil
Developed Summer, 2021 as a topping for hamburger sandwiches. How the onions are cut and the addition of salt and baking soda are key to shrinking the cook time. 

1 medium (about 5 oz or 150 g) yellow onion

1 T (15 ml) vegetable oil

1/8 t (0.5 ml) table salt

1/8 t (0.5 ml) sodium bicarbonate

Slice the onion in half through the poles, trim off ends and peel it. Cut across to yield 1/8th inch (3 mm) half-round slices. Heat the oil over medium to about 350 F in a non-stick skillet, add the onions, salt, and soda, and mix. The mixture should be bubbling actively as water and carbon dioxide is driven off. When brown, soft, and condensed, the onions are ready. Spoon them onto hamburgers or other sandwiches. Serves two. Variation: Scramble with eggs.

Sunday, June 6, 2021

Beans and Greens Soup

Developed June, 2021. Makes a satisfying breakfast, brunch, or lunch dish.

4 c bok choy, Swiss chard, or escarole, leaves separated from stems
1 T olive oil
1 t ground cumin
1 t ground coriander
1 t minced garlic
2 T dry onion
1 14.5 oz can southern-style pinto beans (Bush™ is good)
2 cans of water
1 t salt
1 t sugar
freshly-ground pepper to taste.
2 oz deli or home-cooked chicken meat, diced (optional)
Cut the rinsed stems into bite-size pieces and the leaves into 1-inch squares. Heat oil over medium-high in a three-quart saucepan until it's 325 F. Add the spices and garlic, and stir for 30 seconds. Immediately add the stems and stir well. Keep frying the stems with occasional stirring until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the reserved leaves, cook for a minute and stir in the beans, water, dry onion, salt, and sugar. Cook gently with occasional stirring for another 10 minutes. Serves 3 or 4.

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Pizza in a Pita

Dividing a loaf of pita bread into top and bottom, provides a space for filling. In this quick dish, perfect for a warm breakfast, brunch, or afternoon snack, the space is filled with a tomato sauce, pepperoni sausage, mozzarella cheese and quickly pan-grilled in olive oil. For vegetarian, substitute olive tapenade for the meat.

1 loaf pita bread
2 T prepared tomato salsa or pizza sauce
1 oz thinly-sliced pepperoni or olive tapenade
1/4 c grated mozzarella
1 T grated parmesan
1 t olive oil, divided
With a scissors, cut around the edge of the pita to free it into two halves. With the back of a spoon spread the sauce evenly on the bottow leaving the outer 1/2 inch uncovered. Cover the bottom half with pepperoni slices and sprinkle on the cheeses. Press the top half into place. Heat 1/2 teaspoon of oil in a small nonstick skilled over medium-high. Put in the stuffed pit. Grill for 2 minutes pressing with a spatula. Drizzle on the rest of the oil, flip, and cook for 2 minutes more. Cut into 4 pieces with a sharp knife. Serves one. Variation: Cut into 6 or 8 pieces as a warm appetizer.

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Potato Puff Tuneup

Coarse semolina and oil add extra crispness.

7 oz (200) g frozen potato puffs (Alexia™ is good)
1 T vegetable oil
1 t onion powder
1 T coarse semolina
Preheat toaster oven to 425 F. Place puffs in toaster-oven pan and thaw 30 minutes at room temperature. Drizzle on the oil and spread by rotating the pan to cause the potato puffs to roll around. Next, dust with the onion powder and repeat the rolling motion. Finally, sprinkle on the semolina and roll the potatoes to coat evenly. Roast 15 minutes. Shake the puffs and roast another 5 minutes. Serves two. May be doubled but don't crowd pan.

Monday, May 17, 2021

Stuffed Pan-Grilled Pita

Grilled Pita 
Developed April, 2021. A quick, warm breakfast, crisp on the outside, soft and smooth on the inside. H/T Dan Sousa for scissors tip.

1 pita loaf
1/4 c hummus
1 tsp olive oil
pinch of kosher salt
pinch of granulated garlic

Trim off the rim of the pita with a scissors, leaving an inch intact to act as a hinge. Carefully open up the pita. Spread hummus on one side, leaving the outer half-inch bare. Press the other half firmly in place. Heat a small skillet over medium and add half the oil. When hot, place the stuffed pita in the skillet. Drizzle the remaining oil on the top and fry for about two minutes until the bottom is lightly browned and crisp. Flip the pita, season with the salt and garlic, and fry another two minutes. Cut into quarters with a sharp knife. Serves one. Variation: Cut into six or eight pieces as a hot appetizer.

Saturday, May 1, 2021

Rajas Quesadillas

Developed May, 2020. Easy, fast, cheap, and filling. 


3 T vegetable oil: divided
1 large green pepper, sliced into strips
1 large jalapeño, seeded and diced
1 cup white or yellow onion, thinly sliced through the poles
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 t ground cumin
1/4 t crushed red pepper
1 t oregano
1 t salt
Assembly & Finish
2/3 c shredded Mexican cheese blend
1/3 c queso cotija or pecorino Romano
1/4 c chopped cilantro
2 large flour tortillas
Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a nonstick 12-inch skillet over medium-high. Add the peppers and cook until softened and colored. Add onions and tomatoes and cook until soft. Stir in seasonings and move into a bowl. Wipe out skillet and heat the remaining oil. Soften the tortillas by warming in the microwave. Moisten the edge with water. Place half the filling on half the tortilla, top with half of each cheese, the cilantro, and fold in half. Seal the edges and distribute the filling evenly. Heat the remaining oil over medium-high, and carefully position each quesadilla on one half. Cook about four minutes to brown and then turn to brown the other side. Top with tomato salsa.Variation: Add an ounce of shredded deli meat to the filling.

Friday, April 16, 2021

Creamed Spinach

Developed April, 2021. A simple side dish from pantry ingredients. Sour cream confers a subtle tang.

12 oz (350 g) frozen leaf spinach
1/2 c chopped onions
1 T olive oil
1/2 c sour cream
1/4 t ground nutmeg
salt and pepper, to taste
Thaw the spinach in a mesh strainer. With the back of a large spoon press out excess moisture until the spinach is dry. In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium, add the onion and salt lightly. Fry until softened and clear. Mix in the spinach and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in the sour cream and the seasonings and warm through. Variation: Replace half the sour cream with cream cheese for a richer product. Serves two or three.

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Quick Tomato Noodle Soup with Egg Yolk

Want a warming and filling breakfast on bleak Winter morning? This soup comes together in less than 15 minutes from pantry ingredients. Egg yolks poached in the hot stock adds a bright note of nutrition.

2 T tomato paste
1 rib celery + leaves, cubed and chopped
1 rib bok choy + greens, cubed and chopped
1 qt water
1 pkg Knorr's Tomato Noodle Soup Mix
2 or more large eggs 
2 oz cooked chicken or turkey, chopped (optional)

Combine the celery and bok choy in a bowl. Microwave covered on high for 60 seconds. Put the tomato paste and the water into a two-quart saucepan, cover and bring to a boil. Stir in the vegetables and the soup mix, and cook uncovered at a fast simmer. While the soup is cooking, carefully crack two eggs into bowl, taking care not to damage the yolks. After 8 minutes, take the soup off heat, add the meat if desired and, with a spoon, lift each yolk into the hot stock. Whip the egg whites until frothy and spoon onto the soup. Cover and let sit 5 minutes before serving. Divide into bowls, placing a yolk in each. Serves 2 to 4.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Sauteéd Spinach with Garlic

First made decades ago. This is a classic Mediterranean dish. Recorded January, 2021. A Family Favorite. Simple, fast, and easy. Only four ingredients.

1 large bunch of fresh spinach
2 T olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp salt
Rinse the spinach to remove any loose grit. Let drain in the sink. Heat the oil in a 12-inch skillet until very hot, add the garlic and salt, and almost immediately start adding the spinach. Use tongs to mix as you add in the spinach. When all has been added, keep moving with tongs. Cook until wilted and tender, about three minutes. Serves two. Makes a good side dish for rich meats, creamed dishes, fish.

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Margarita Cocktail

Simple recipe for a refreshing cocktail from scratch.

3 T (45 ml) tequila
1 T (15 ml) triple sec
2 T (30 ml) lime juice
Moisten the rim of a rocks glass with lime juice, and dip in coarse salt. Fill with ice. Add ingredients and stir well. Serves 1.

Kielbasa, Cabbage, and Potato Boil

Developed September, 2020. Fast, easy, and cheap supper.

1 lb kielbasa or similar sausage
1 T vegetable oil
6 c green cabbage, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
1-1/2 lb thin-skinned potatoes cut into 3/4 inch pieces
2 T chicken or beef stock concentrate (Better Than Bouillon™ is good)
6 peppercorns
water to cover
Cut the sausage into four pieces crosswise and then each piece in half lengthwise to yield 8 pieces. Heat the oil over medium in a large saucepan.  Fry the sausage, cut face down until browned and crispy. Add the cabbage and the seasonings, cover with water and bring to a gentle boil.  Cook 5 minutes, add the potatoes, and continue cooking until the potatoes are tender, about 12 minutes. Adjust seasoning. Serve in a bowl with some of the stock. Offer spicy mustard on the side. Variation: Include a medium yellow onion quartered through the root with the potatoes. Serves three or four.

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Quick and Easy Tomato-Noodle Soup

Developed August, 2020 from mostly pantry items. Pairs nicely with a sandwich for an easy summer meal. Optionally vegan.
1/2 c chopped celery with leaves
1 T vegetable oil
1/2 c chopped fresh or frozen tomato
2 T dry onion
1 qt water
1/2 t salt
1/2 t thyme
1/4 t celery seed
tomato based pasta soup mix (Knorr™)
1/4 c diced green onions
1 oz deli chicken, diced (omit for vegan)
In a two-quart sauce pan, heat the oil over medium high. Add the celery, lower the heat, and cook covered for 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato and dry onion, cover, and cook a few minutes more. Add the water and seasonings and bring to a boil. Stir in the soup mix and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the green onion and chicken. Serves 4 as part of a light meal.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Clams in an Herb and Cream Broth

Developed by Laura, June, 2020, from a dish named "waterzooi", the house specialty at Caprice Bistro, Wilmington, NC. Of Flanders origin, the dish is both fast and easy to prepare.
2 dozen littleneck clams
3 T butter
1/2 c water
1 c white wine
1/2 cup half and half or cream
2 T minced garlic
1/4 c minced shallot
1 green onion, white and green parts chopped separately
2 T minced chives
a fistful of thyme sprigs
2 T flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 T fresh lemon juice
Rinse the clams in cold water. Discard any that are open. Melt the butterI n a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the minced garlic, shallot and the white part of the green onion.  Sauté until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the wine and simmer for a minute or two. Add the water and return to a simmer. Add the clams and the remaining green onion, the other herbs, and the lemon juice. Cover the pan and steam gently for about 4 minutes or until all the clams open. Divide the clams into two bowls. Discard the thyme stem, raise the heat and reduce the liquid by one-third. Stir in the dairy, warm gently, and pour the broth over the clams. Serve with a crusty, warm baguette.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Creamy French Toast

This recipe yields a product with a custard-like center and crispy exterior. 
1 T vegetable oil
1 T butter
4 slices white bread
2 large eggs
1/2 c milk
a pinch of salt
1 t sugar
1/2 t vanilla extract
Cut the bread in half and heat in a toaster oven at 200 F for 10 minutes to partly dry it. Beat the eggs well and stir in the other ingredients. Heat a 12-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and butter, and when the butter stops sizzling, soak two pieces of bread on both sides until moist, and add to the hot fat. Repeat for the remaining bread. Pour any leftover batter over the slices. Fry about 3 minutes on the first side until browned. Flip and continue frying until the second side is done. Serves two. Offer sugar, preserves, maple syrup, or fruit sauce.

Tiny Peas and Pearl Onions Steamed in Butter Sauce

Quickly prepare a versatile side dish from pantry ingredients.
4 oz frozen tiny peas
4 oz frozen pearl onions
1 T chicken or vegetable stock concentrate
1 t butter, cut into small dice
1 T water
1/2 t salt
1 t sugar
1 t tapioca starch
Thaw the peas in cold water and drain. Thaw the onions on a paper towel. Combine the vegetables in a shallow bowl, top with the seasonings, and sprinkle the starch over all. Steam for 4 minutes, mix with tongs and steam another 2 minutes, mix and serve. Serves two. Can be doubled.