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Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

Larb Gai (Lap-Guy)

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This recipe is a twist on a South East Asian dish. In my late twenties I bought a one way ticket to Bangkok. For almost six months I traveled through Thailand, Malaysia and Laos. This dish was my absolute favorite, and I asked for it everywhere I went — to the dismay of some purveyors. Larb is a “peasant dish” served from basic ingredients and can be cooked street-side. I prefer Larb with chicken, Larb Gai. When it is cooked in Asia, it is cooked with boiling water. The cook will pour boiling water over the ground chicken until it is cooked through. This recipe is a shortcut where I cook the chicken in a cast iron skillet with coconut oil.

1lb ground chicken
Fresh mint (30 leaves, size of silver dollar)
Chlies
Red onion med-large
Fish sauce
Lemongrass (optional)
Basil
Peanuts (optional)
Rice powder
Cilantro

Saute ground chicken (or ground pork, beef), add 1/2 red onion, finely chopped, when chicken is nearly done, add lemongrass to taste. I use a tube of lemongrass that is already prepped and squeeze out about a generous tablespoon. Add chilies of your choice, fresh or dried. Dried will be more potent. I would use one fresh thai or fresno chile about the size of a small elephant’s toe nail. Add fish sauce, (be careful!) I add about 1/2 teaspoon- 1 teaspoon at this stage. I can always add more later, but too much fish sauce will ruin any dish. Get to know this ingredient. Add about 15 mint leaves, each about the size of a silver dollar. When the chicken is fully cooked, add cilantro and basil, your choice as to how much to use. I use more basil than cilantro and try to use Thai basil, but sweet italian basil will work too. Add rice powder. Rice powder can be made by pulverizing rice in a coffee grinder or food processor. I use long grain brown rice. Make sure the rice is really pulverized. Feel it with your hands. It should feel like fine sand. The rice powder soaks up the flavors of this dish and really gives it a great consistency and texture. Use about 2 tablespoons of rice powder per pound of ground meat. Once your ingredients are all sautéed together, let the dish “rest” on the stove for about five minutes. Before serving, add another 15 fresh mint leaves, the other 1/2 of the red onion finely chopped, and some more basil and cilantro to taste. Taste to see if you want more fish sauce. Recently I added some peanuts. Experiment, Explore, Enjoy! Serve with thai sticky rice, (not sushi rice), or black thai rice, or without carb. I like to put the meat into red or green cabbage leaves and eat like a taco or roll. Enjoy!

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Father’s Day Pie, by Noah (so simple a 13-year old or a lawyer can make)

1 pre-made graham cracker crumb crust (9″)
2 pkgs of instant pudding (banana or vanilla)
1 or 2 ripe bananas
Milk (for the pudding mix)
Raspberries or strawberries (1/4 cup +/-)

Slice banana(s) into the bottom of the pie crust.
Mix pudding with milk (as per pudding instructions)
Pour pudding mix into pie crust.
Let sit for 5 minutes.
Add fresh berries on top in a design of your choosing.

Refrigerate for 15 minutes. It’s ready!

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Rich’s Holiday Pies

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Alice’s Spicy Split Pea Soup

Ingredients:

1 pound dried split peas

2 ham shanks (or 1 ham hock and 1 pound of diced ham)

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 cup finely chopped yellow onions

1/2 cup finely chopped celery

1/2 cup finely chopped carrots

2 teaspoons chopped garlic

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 bay leaf

2 teaspoons thyme

2 teaspoons red pepper flakes

8 cups water

Cover with water (2 inches) and soak peas 8 hours or overnight in large pot.  Drain peas and set aside.

In large pot over medium heat melt butter.  Add onions and cook stirring frequently until nearly translucent.  Add carrots and celery and cook until soft (about 3 minutes).  Add garlic and cook stirring for 1 minute.

Add ham shank and ham and cook stirring until ham begins to brown.  Add drained peas, salt pepper, pepper flakes.  Add 8 cups of water, bay leaf and thyme and cook, stirring occasionally, over medium low heat until peas are tender. (1-1/2 hours).  Add more water as needed.

Remove bay leaf and discard.  Remove shanks, separate meat from bone, dice ham, discard bone and return ham to pot.

Serves 8.

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Post-Holiday Turkey Soup

Don’t throw that turkey carcas into the trash; put it into a large pot filled about half-way with water, on the stove, bring it to a boil and simmer for about 5 hours.  Add water if necessary, so that you end up with about 1/3 of the pot being turkey broth when the bird remnants are removed.

Strain the broth and sort the shredded meat from any remaining small bones.  Toss all of the bones and save the meat; set meat aside.

Return the (strained) broth to the pot; bring broth back to a simmer.  Chop and add vegetables to taste, such as:

–  1 medium yellow onion, cut to about 1″ squares;

–  6 – 8 medium carrots, sliced;

–  10 celery stalks cut to about 3/4″; okay to include some leaves;

–  mild small garlic; slice cloves to about 1/4″ size;

–  1 jalapeno pepper; remove seeds; cut to about 1/4″ squares.

Simmer all for about 15 minutes.

Add 1/2 cup to 1 cup of pasta (e.g. small rigatoni);

Add pepper and salt to taste;

Simmer all for an additional 15 minutes.

Return turkey to the pot.  Add cilantro (2 teaspoons, chopped).

Let sit for 10 – 15 minutes; serve and eat.

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Rich’s Chicken Pot Pie

Start with a full Organic Chicken Breast. Poach in 1 inch of water (covered) for approximately 15 minutes until cooked and tender. Set aside to slice, pull apart into bite-sized pieces.

Pillsbury pie crust (2) or equivalent. Roll out one pie crust so that it will fill and will overlap the sides of a 9-10” deep dish pie pan. Poke fork holes in the crust and bake at 400 degrees for 5 – 10 minutes. (Leave excess overlapping the sides a little, since the crust will shrink a little, baking it this way.

Other than the Chicken, use any/all of the following ingredients:

6 organic carrots, sliced to 1/8 inch; ½ large yellow onion, sliced and diced.  In large fry pan, sautee in tablespoons of butter for 10 minutes.

2 cloves organic garlic, thin sliced. Add to fry pan for 5 minutes.

4 stalks organic celery, cut to 1” bits; 3 small organic zucchinis, thin sliced. Add to fry pan for 5 minutes.

1 dozen mushrooms, sliced.  Add to fry pan until mushrooms are done.

Salt and pepper lightly, to taste. (Remember, mushroom soup gets added that is already salted; see below.)

Heat approximately 1 ½ cups of mushroom soup in a saucepan on the stove. (I recommend a mild organic carton of natural creamy portabella mushroom soup, like “Imagine Natural Creations” available at City Market/ Kroger.)

Pull the cooked bottom pie crust from the oven. Spread the chicken on the bottom of the pie pan; add the vegetables to the top. Pour the mushroom soup over the top of the vegetables.

Add 1 – 2 tablespoons of shredded Parmesan cheese, sprinkled on top.

Put crust onto top, poke vent holes with fork; trim edges. Return to 400 degree oven; set temperature down to 375 for 40 minutes. Enjoy!

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Roasted Sausages and Grapes

Kudos to Paralegal Alison Lang for recommending this wonderful winter recipe!  This recipe pairs well with Jon Ryan’s rustic bread!  Enjoy a glass of Chianti with this dish on a cold winter night!

This recipe is reprinted from Food Network and can be found here.

Ingredients

Directions

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.

Parboil the sausages in water to cover for 8 minutes to rid them of excess fat.

Melt the butter in a large heatproof roasting pan, add the grapes, and toss to coat. Over moderately high heat add the wine. Stir with a wooden spoon for a few minutes until the wine has reduced by half.

Using tongs, transfer the parboiled sausages to the roasting pan and push them down in the grapes so the sausages will not brown too quickly. Roast in the oven, turning the sausages once, until the grapes are soft and the sausages have browned, 20 to 25 minutes.

Place the roasting pan on top of the stove over a medium-high heat and add the balsamic vinegar. Scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the roasting pan, and allow the vinegar and juices to reduce until they are thick and syrupy. With a slotted spoon, transfer the sausages and grapes to a serving platter.

Pour the sauce over the sausages and grapes and serve immediately, accompanied with fresh bread.

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Rich’s Meatloaf Recipe

Ingredients:

2 lbs. of natural ground beef
1 pkg of fresh spinach (cooked down to approx. 1/2 cup)
1 clove fresh garlic, sliced into spinach while cooking
1/2 carton (approx. 8 oz.) small curd cottage cheese
1/2 cup and 1 tbs. of dried shredded onions
3 eggs
1 cup fresh mushrooms
4 slices of fresh wheat bread (torn into small pieces)
salt
pepper

*****

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Cook spinach and garlic
Slice and fry mushrooms slightly (still firm)

******

Mix ground beef, 2 eggs, cottage cheese, bread. Salt and pepper lightly.

Add about 1/2 of mixture in bottom of pan (approx. 6″ x 10″).

Mix spinach and garlic with 1 egg and 1 tbs. of onion. Spread evenly over base. Layer mushrooms over spinach.

Add remainder of ground mixture. Smooth over the top.

Bake 90 minutes.

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Penne with Black Eye Peas, Spinach & Pancetta


1lb Penne pasta

4-6 oz Cooked blacked eyed peas

2 oz Pancetta (2-3 thick slices)

4-6 oz Cooked drained spinach

1-2 T Butter/extra virgin olive oil

2-3T Coarsely chopped Italian (flat leaf) parsley

Parmigianino Reggiano

Kosher salt

Black pepper

Pasta pot

Large sauté pan

Bring 8 quarts of water to boil. Cook 1lb Penne to less than al dente. You are under cooking your pasta from the texture you would like to eat it at, because you are going to finish cooking it with the ingredients in the large sauté pan or whatever pan you have big enough to accommodate the entire pound of pasta. After putting water on stove, and you are using plenty of water, (what might seem like too much), add 2T kosher salt. Bring to boil. Add pasta. Stir. Stir again in 1 minute, and repeat stirring each 1-2 minutes for the 8-12 minutes it will take you to cook the pasta until it retains a “bite.” Do not leave the stove. (You should be multi-tasking with the steps below, but you do not have to. You can cook the pasta and let it sit for only a few minutes. If you cook the pasta first, drizzle some olive oil over it to keep it from sticking. A minimal amount will do the trick.) Drain pasta and reserve about a cup of the water. I place a colander in the sink on top of a pot and catch some of the water, then pull the pot out from under the colander to disregard the remaining water down the drain. Figure out what works best for you when working with boiling water.

Heat a sauté pan big enough to accommodate 1lb pasta. Once the pan is gently warmed, (not scorching), add butter and or olive oil. I use 1-2 T extra virgin olive oil. It is worth the cost of the flavor. If your pancetta is super fatty, you can trim the fat, or reduce the oil/butter, or indulge in the decadence. You will find that pre-packaged grocery store pancetta is thin and will burn quickly. It is best to get deli-sliced pancetta about ¼ inch thick, or use think sliced bacon. If you have to use the thin pancetta, it will only take about 1 minute to burn if your heat is too high. Adjust your heat accordingly, and do not leave the stove. Stir. Get the bits of animal fat off the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. (Prosciutto is not suitable, as it will burn and turn grey. I love prosciutto, and this recipe can be used with prosciutto, just add it at the end after everything is cooked. Prosciutto is cured so there is no need to cook it. Pancetta needs to be cooked.)

Add cooked drained black eyed peas. You can buy them frozen, canned or you can soak and cook yourself. Stir to coat the peas with the olive oil, butter, animal fat, add the Italian parsley. Make sure your heat is low enough to warm the ingredients not burn them. Add some butter or olive oil if your pan is too dry. You can also add a little pasta water if you would like 1T at a time, (you will add some pasta water later). Add undercooked pasta and Italian parsley. Toss. Add spinach. Toss. Add shaved Parmigianino to your taste, Toss. I like to use a vegetable peeler and shave off pieces at this stage. I add some at this stage and grate some over top when serving. Cook for about 2-3 minutes to bring all of the ingredients together. I avoid salt, since the ham (pancetta), the cheese and the pasta water all contain the salt. Your choice. I do add cracked black pepper in to my liking, and encourage you to experiment with customizing the recipe to your liking. Add a dollop of truffle butter at this stage or red pepper flakes. Enjoy with a good beverage of your choice, (A nice red or white wine, beer, mineral water.) Abbondonza!

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Cajun Shrimp Recipe


1 stick butter

1 stick margarine

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

2 TBS ground black pepper

1/2 tsp ground rosemary

1 tsp hot sauce (such as Tabasco)

1 tsp salt

2 cloves garlic (minced)

2 large lemons

2 lbs. shrimp

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Melt butter and margarine. Thinly slice one lemon and juice one lemon.  Mix the ingredients except for the lemon slices and the shrimp.  Put about 1/4 cup of the mixture in a baking dish.  Layer the shrimp and the lemons.  Pour the remaining spice mixture over the shrimp.  Leave about 1″ of headroom in the baking dish.  Bake uncovered until the shrimp are done, stirring every 10-15 minutes. (Depending on the size of the shrimp this takes around 30-40 minutes.)  Serve with a crusty baguette and lots of napkins.

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