One of life’s many delights is the joy of having choices. With a simple click, you’ll find recipes for three delicious homemade mayonnaises for summer sandwiches and salads. Included is this first, basic mayonnaise from cook extraordinaire Julia Child!
Wednesday, September 2, 2020
Wednesday, August 19, 2020
Plenty of people have been baking during the COVID-19 pandemic, and what they’re baking is bread. The puff-’n’-stuff supermarket brand I once thought a bargain at $2.50 a loaf looks pretty expensive, now.
Clues that home cooks are baking bread?
• Flour and yeast have been in short supply since the crisis became part of our lives.
• New bread machines are hard to find.
• Cast-iron Dutch ovens are also hard to find. Cast-iron Dutch ovens are essential for No-Knead Artisan Bread, which everyone wants to bake, just as everyone seems to have gone crazy over Sourdough Biscuits and Sourdough Bread.
I recently made a 1-1/2 lb. (0.7 kg) loaf of Bread Machine Olive-Cheese Bread ... Wow! This is a bread machine recipe I’ll definitely make over and over again. It’s a winner that deserves 5 out of 5 stars. If you don’t have a bread machine, follow the traditional method for hand-made bread, taking care to add the wet and dry ingredients in exactly the order the traditional recipe calls for.
Bread Machine Olive-Cheese Bread:
1 c. (250 mL) water, room temperature
3 tbsp. (45 mL) olive oil
1-1/2 tbsp. (22 mL) granulated sugar
3/4 tsp. (3.75 mL) dried thyme
1-1/2 tsp. (7.5 mL) salt (see Note)
3 c. (750 mL) bread flour
2-1/4 tsp. (11.25 mL) yeast
1/2 c. (250 mL) crumbled feta cheese, well drained
6 tbsp. (90 mL) coarsely chopped green olives, well drained (see Flavor Note)
3 tbsp. (45 ml) chopped, commercially sun-dried tomatoes, well drained and blotted dry
3 tbsp. (45 mL) additional bread flour
Place water, olive oil, sugar, thyme, salt, and flour into loaf pan of bread machine. Set for white bread, medium crust. Press Start button.
In medium bowl, stir together feta, olives, and sun-dried tomatoes, distributing evenly. When first kneading is finished or when first beeper of bread machine sounds, sprinkle feta, olives, and tomatoes with additional bread flour. Mix quickly but well, adding to dough in bread machine. The machine will do the rest, baking a perfect loaf of this delicious and interesting bread.
Note: Do not reduce salt!
Flavor Note: Pimiento-stuffed olives impart the most wonderful flavor and ribbons of color to this bread.
Friday, August 7, 2020
The dish we know as Beef Stroganoff is steeped in Russian history. Wikipedia’s surprisingly weak entry on the topic left me wanting more. I still do. I found a lively, intrigue-filled description of how this dish came to be on a website that later dropped all reference to the Stroganoff family of Russia. Pity.
Onward! Nicole Parton’s Favorite Recipes features several types of Stroganoff - not one of them as fascinating as the history lesson I read and lost, but nonetheless filling and delicious. I hope you'll try these One Click recipes for …
Tuesday, August 4, 2020
Canned chickpeas are a staple, at our house. They’re delicious, nutritious, low in fat, and never go to waste. I was poking around the kitchen cupboard a few days ago, wondering how if could make a salad with almost no “saladables” on hand, when I threw together these interesting ingredients and came up with a decent little salad I judged a “keeper.”
Chickpea and Rice Salad:
3/4 c. (185 mL) white rice (see How to Cook Rice)
3/4 c. (185 mL) poultry or vegetable stock commercial or homemade (see One Click: Stock)
1/4 c. (60 mL) water
1-1/2 tsp. (7.5 mL) soy sauce
2 tbsp. (10 mL) peeled and finely diced raw carrot
2 tbsp. (10 mL) finely diced raw celery and/or frozen peas
One 14-oz. (398 mL) can chickpeas, rinsed, drained, and blotted dry
2/3 c. (160 mL) large-diced, cooked, chilled poultry or firm fish, boned and skinned
1-1/2 tbsp. (23 mL) finely chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper, to taste
Cook rice in stock and water, adding more of either liquid according to which cooking method of you prefer. Chill cooked rice, stirring in soy until well blended. Add carrot, celery, and/or frozen peas and chickpeas, blending well. Stir in chilled chicken or fish, being careful to keep delicate diced fish intact. Add parley and seasonings. Chill at least 30 min. Serves 4 as a salad; 2 as a main dish.
Optional: Stir in a teaspoon of olive oil, if you wish; I found it wasn’t necessary.
Sunday, July 26, 2020
The Prize? We won’t mention the prize,
but it sure looks like chicken feet ...
We baked our wings in similar dishes - Ron’s clear ...
And Nicole’s tinted blue, so they could tell their wings apart.
Ron marinated his Honey-Garlic Chicken Wings.
|Nicole’s Sticky Ginger Wings needed no marination..|
As the sets of wings baked side-by-side,
the Cook-Off took off!
Which wings won? You decide. These and other Wing
recipes are findable as One Click: Chicken Wings
or Chicken Wings: One Click.
Saturday, July 25, 2020
Friday, July 24, 2020
Thursday, July 23, 2020
Wednesday, July 22, 2020
That’s why I’ve expressed 1 c. all-purpose flour or sugar, for example, in milliliters (mL) rather than in grams (g). It’s far easier for us cooks to rely on a measuring cup than a weigh scale, so I’ve presented flour and sugar as they appear in your measuring cup rather than offering their weights. Weighing ingredients (as professional chefs do) is a more accurate measurement, but most of us aren’t professional chefs and most of the cookbooks we use weren’t written for pros.
Baked goods are a whole different story. Think of them as a chemical equation. When a bread recipe calls for a certain quantity of salt, or a pinch of sugar stirred in with the yeast, don’t omit or reduce either, or your bread will fall flat. As you go along, you’ll learn that some ingredient combinations - dairy sour cream and baking soda, for example - produce a strong chemical reaction. I love to watch the air bubbles form when that happens, knowing they’ll play an essential part in leavening the cake or cookie or whatever else it is I’m making.
Occasionally, recipes will call for a “scant” cup or a “scant” tablespoon. That means “slightly less” than a regular cup or tablespoon, with no leeway for extra!
Here’s how: Using a large spoon and an upward motion, gently spoon about twice the amount of flour your recipe requires into a “dry” measuring cup until it rises well above the surface. Without compacting it, level it off straight across the measuring cup using a metal frosting spreader or large knife.
Whether light or dark, brown sugar is measured very differently. Unless a recipe says otherwise, brown sugar should be tightly packed into a dry measuring cup.
Tuesday, July 21, 2020
I’m sobbing uncontrollably as I write this post. I’ve never pretended to be Martha Stewart. If I were Martha Stewart, I’d have a rap sheet and would be old and rich. The old part, I already am, but I digress.
Most of you readers know I’m not a gourmet cook. I’m … I’m … just a semi-ordinary woman who likes to cook, so how can one reader be so cruel?
I am, of course, referring to Mrs. Harold Schermerlinger of Philadelphia, who regular readers will recognize as a frequent letter-writer to this blog (actually, the only letter-writer, but who’s counting?).
I’ve just reached into the mailbag to find yet another letter from Mrs. Harold Schermerlinger, whose words bite harder than Seymour, my last dog, who sank his teeth into my son’s forehead and just sort of dangled there, not wanting to let go.
Seymour would still be hanging on and my son would be 6 ft. under if I hadn’t distracted him with “Go-o-od boy! Here’s a cookie!” Many bites later, we rewarded him with the “long sleep.” (Seymour. Not my son.)
The last time Mrs. Harold Schermerlinger wrote, she said she and Mr. Harold Schermerlinger were going to sue me.
Lucky for me, they relented, but this time, Mrs. Harold Schermerlinger (just let me blow my nose) writes:
“I’ve never read a recipe blog worse than yours! Mr. Harold Schermerlinger is partial to Zucchini Loaf, so I thought I’d follow your stupid recipe using the 5 lb. zucchini an anonymous neighbor dumped outside our front door.
“Thanks to this #$@! recipe, my Zucchini Loaf looked like Steven Tyler before his facelift. My husband of 44-1/2 years, Mr. Harold Schermerlinger, and our 45-year-old triplets, will forever avoid your blog!”
It’s a good thing - Martha Stewart.
Monday, July 20, 2020
Sunday, July 19, 2020
This post has appeared before, as have my recent posts on How to Make Stock. I’ve brought them back because this is a difficult time. Just as we’re all in this together, we all need to pull together and support one another as COVID-19 knocks on the door.
Forget the system we used in the ’80s. It was too obsessive ... too compulsive … too what-e-ver.
Here’s how it worked back then: Let’s say you froze eight pork chops and six T-bones (I used to be more extravagant, actually buying T-bones. It was just T-bones, of course. I couldn’t afford the steak draped over them). So let’s return to our eight pork chops and six T-bones.