Web Analytics

A Great Pizza Crust Recipe

pizza crust

Ah. There is nothing better than a great pizza on a nice Sunday afternoon with a great bottle of wine. And this pizza crust is easy to make and ready to go.

For those who care, this pizza is one of my favorites, with onions, garlic, sausage, a little green pepper and some mushrooms, with way bunches of cheese (Provalone and mozzarella and some pepperoni and basil on the top. You can, of course, make your own.

Just so you’ll understand, I made this after a rather unpleasant and (I hope) providential visit to the hospital late last week, so pardon me if this is a bit short today. We’ll try making up for things as we go along here.

(more…)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

A Simple Chocolate Pie

chocolate pie

Chocolate pie is what I would call one of the best things you can easily make, and win a few hearts along the way. Valentine’s Day is coming!! With a little bit of help from one of my grandma’s favorite recipes (and some upgraded chocolate), you can have the pie in a hurry, too. The recipe is very easy to make and the only thing that’s a downside is having to wait around for the pie to cool enough to eat it.

The pie you see in the picture is not the simplest nor the most extravagant pie you can do with this recipe. If you care, you can use a chocolate pie crust made up of Oreos or Graham crackers, or a simple pie crust from the refrigerated aisle at the grocery store. I use my own crust, but didn’t bother to make it look as pretty as you might have seen elsewhere at Discovery Cooking. I just wanted something quick and easy. I used some whipped cream and some chocolate chips to decorate mine, you can use fruit or have it just plain. Your call.

(more…)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Steak Kabobs and Peanut Noodles

Steak Kabobs and Peanut Noodles

Just a little more beef. Oh, and peanut noodles. Yep. Peanut noodles.

First, we can start with the steak kabobs — I used some filet mignon, a nice treat itself — with just a little onion. You can use whatever you have on hand that doesn’t require marinating, but I have to say, the filet was a very good choice for this. A quick turn on the grill and they were done. And seriously, that’s all there was to it. But here’s the thing: the peanut noodles makes this from good to fantastic.

I would have never thought that would be the case, but I saw on a blog somewhere the idea of steak and peanut noodles and my first reaction was something along the lines of “really”? Then I got to thinking about various items I’ve seen, mainly at Thai restaurants, and I started thinking okay, maybe this might be something to try. I decided to use Thai rice noodles in a large square pattern, but you could use almost anything for this. Took a bit of time to come up with the right set of ingredients and when we finally got it right, the whole plate seemed to come together just as it should.

Seriously guys, you really should give this a try.

And by the way, this is really easy to do.

(more…)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Lucious Beef Stroganoff and Noodles

beef stroganoff

Beef Stroganoff is one of those dishes that seldom comes up very often on restaurant menus, but when it’s done right, it’s about as luscious a beef dish as your likely to find, just about anywhere. Fortunately, if you like a really good portion of beef with onions and mushrooms, you can easily make a nice Stroganoff, even if your local restaurants aren’t likely to be serving it.

The trick, if you want to call it that, is to make the beef as rare as you can. That means a good top sirloin steak cut into nice thin slices, a really hot skillet, and paying very close attention to the beef while you’re searing it. That also means taking your time and using two or three sessions to get the meat done without overcrowding it in the skillet. The rest, is to season the meat very lightly — the sour cream, onions and mushrooms do most of the work — with maybe just a little thyme.

Lay the Stroganoff on noodles and you’re all set.

(more…)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Stir-Fried Chicken with Chinese Cabbage

chicken with Chinese cabbage

I love Chinese cooking. And while the Chinese will often cook three and four smaller meals, all to be served more or less at once, any one of them can also be made into a full single course, if that’s what your looking to make. This stir-fried chicken with Chinese cabbage is one of those dishes. I’ve made this as a one-time serving, but you can also cut the proportions down and serve it with one or two other dishes.

One of the things that I think makes this dish special is that I can use some of the Chinese ingredients that I’ve picked up at the local Chinese grocery store, like Shao Xing cooking wine and zhenjiang vinegar (and while it’s not in the recipe, I also often use a little Sechuan pepper as well). You can use dry sherry for the wine and wine vinegar for the zhenjiang, but if you can get them, the real things are by far much better. I know it sounds a little crazy, but it does change the character of the dish just enough to make it so much better.

And be sure to use Chinese cabbage (also known as Napa cabbage). It’s not something where you can use regular cabbage.

(more…)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Shrimp and Curry Soup

shrimp and curry soup

Shrimp and curry soup is something that originally came from a New England and Soup Factory Cookbook, something I used for more than a number of good soups. And after trying it a few times and making some adjustments, it turned out to be as good a shrimp soup as I’ve ever tried. And while I tend to keep my own home made curry around, it works just as well with good ol’ curry powder from the grocery store. The main thing is to try the curry, adding more or less to suit your taste.

The secret here, by the way, is not the shrimp or the curry, but the wonderful way the soup uses okra, which adds color and otherwise just brightens up the whole soup. It’s amazing and really represents something new (for me) in a soup. Don’t even try making this without the okra.

Otherwise, while it looks like there is a lot going on here, there really isn’t much going on that you wouldn’t find in almost any good soup. 

(more…)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Sous Vide Pork Chops (Grandma’s Style)

sous vide pork chops

As I may have mentioned (once or twice before), I’ve had a very dysfunctional relationship to the good old fashioned pork chop. I’ve made plenty of them (and some very good, as a matter of fact), but every time I set  out to do chops, all I can think about is how bad they can be. Yes, it’s me perhaps, but the idea of failure always reaches out and grabs me by the throat. That’s over now. Not sure why I hadn’t done these sooner, but these sous vide pork chops are just perfect. Not some of the time, but every time. And these grandma style chops, with breading and everything, are very simple and done very easily.

The thing about pork chops in general, and really all meat, is getting them done without overcooking them. Using the sous vide cooking method, I set the time for about an hour at 140 degrees, cook the chops that way, and then, at the end, cook them in a simple flour-egg-bread crumbs mixture (with in my case loads of garlic shreds) that comes out perfectly every time, with none of my grandma’s occasionally overcooked versions. Serve them over onions and mushrooms and you’ve got a feast.

(more…)

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
%d bloggers like this: