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. Some like it on meats as well.

1/4 c finely-minced shallot
1/4 c red wine vinegar
1/4 c rice wine vinegar
1/4 t freshly ground black pepper
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, and 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


O
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 add the spinach. When thawed and bubbling again, take off heat, crack in the egg, cover and poach it for 2 to 3 minutes. Break up the egg and stir into the soup. Serves 2 to 3 as a light breakfast or lunch.

Monday, August 29, 2022

Brownies

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.