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03/02/09

  08:42:43 pm, by Airycat   , 156 words  
Categories: Salads

Macaroni Salad

When summer is here, it means picnics and cooler foods. We love macaroni and potato salads. There isn't anything terribly unique about these recipes except that, to us, they just don't taste right with anything but Miracle Whip salad dressing, but if you prefer a blander taste, mayonnaise will work.

  • 2 CUPS MACARONI (MEASURED UNCOOKED) COOKED
  • 4-6 EGGS, HARD COOKED
  • 3+ STALKS CELERY
  • ½-1 GREEN PEPPER
  • ½-1 CUCUMBER
  • 1+ ONION
  • 1-3 TBS. SWEET RELISH
  • MIRACLE WHIP

Finely chop all the vegetables. Cut the eggs into small pieces. Mix eggs and vegetables with relish and enough Miracle Whip to make it gooey (¼ C.?) Slowly mix in macaroni. It shouldn't be too sloppy when it's all mixed. Salt and pepper to taste. For a little different taste add a sprinkle of basil, parsley and/or garlic to the mix.

This makes a big bowlful and lasts the 3 of us for 2 or 3 meals.

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  08:35:30 pm, by Airycat   , 122 words  
Categories: Salads

Raita (Salad Dressing)

Most of the time I do okay with bottled dressings. My favorite is Marie's Raspberry Vinagrette. But there's one dressing I have never seen in a store. That is raita. It's the creamy white dressing you see in Indian restaurants and it's actually very easy to make.

  • 2 C. plain yogurt
  • 1cucumber, feeled and finely choped or grated
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper (freshly ground is best)
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/8 tsp. paprika (for garnishing, optional)

Mix all ingredients (except paprika) in a bowl and mix with a fork or whisk until well blended. pour into serving dish and garnish. This keeps a few days in the refrigerator.

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  08:30:50 pm, by Airycat   , 110 words  
Categories: Salads, One Dish Meals

Green Salad

I'm good at buying the salad mixes in the grocery store. My favortie is "Spring Mix" with lots of dark green and red leaves and no iceberg lettuce. Sometimes, this is all I need with a bit of salad dressing. Other times I add so much, that the salad becomes a meal. What can't you add to greens to make a salad?

  • diced or shredded cheese
  • sliced or chopped egg
  • sunflower seeds
  • bean sprouts
  • green pepper
  • cucumber
  • carrots
  • onion
  • chicken, cubed
  • tofu cubes
  • raisins
  • dried fruit mix
  • canned fruit
  • fresh fruit
  • peanuts
  • almonds
  • pickles
  • shrimp
  • crab meat
  • --- be creative! ---

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  08:18:51 pm, by Airycat   , 317 words  
Categories: Chicken

Chicken Stir Fry

This recipe is not anything new. It's just my variation of a stir fry. I use more variety of vegetable than I've seen in most recipes.

  • 2 Boneless chicken breasts, sliced thinly
  • ¼ C. soy sauce
  • 1" piece of ginger root,peeled
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil or grape seed oil
  • 8 oz sliced mushrooms
  • ½ C. carrots, sliced at an angle
  • ½ C. small broccoli flowerettes
  • ½ C. snow or sugar snap peas
  • 1 can water chestnuts
  • 1 can bamboo shoots
  • ½ tsp. chicken base(salt free!) or about ½ C. salt free broth
  • 1-2 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 1 C. pitted black olives (optional)

Put the chicken into a bowl with the soy sauce. Have all the vegetables cut and ready to put into the pan. The vegetables listed are only suggestions. Any vegetables work. (Sometimes in winter I use a bag of frozen stir fry vegetables.)

Chop the ginger and garlic finely and brown it in a frying pan or wok in the oil. Be careful not to burn it! Before it is brown, add the chicken (hold back the soy sauce) and cook that until it is white. Stir in the chicken base/broth and the reserved soy sauce. Add the hardest vegetables. Cook about 3 minutes and add the other vegetables and mushrooms. Cook about another 3 minutes or so (Make sure the chicken is cooked through.) and mix the cornstarch with a little cold water and make sure ALL the lumps are out then add it to the cooking mixture and blend it in. Serve with rice.

I've taken to making this without the chicken base or broth and cornstarch. I use a little Sun-Bird Oriental Vegetable Stir-Fry or Hot & Spicy Szechwan seasoning mix. I don't follow the package directions, but just sprinkle it on and mix in to taste. It doesn't make as much sauce, but it has a lighter taste.

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  08:11:47 pm, by Airycat   , 324 words  
Categories: Ground Beef, Vegetarian

Spaghetti Sauce

This is a recipe my mother taught me when I was about 8 years old. All measurements are approximate, since I don't actually measure when I'm cooking. Because of that, it never comes out exactly the same for me, but I'm always told it's good. This recipe makes a large pot of sauce. I learned to cook for a crowd of 6 hungry folk.

  • 2 to 4 T olive oil
  • 6 medium/large onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 6-10 stalks of celery
  • 1 or ½ green pepper
  • 2 large cans tomato puree OR 1 large can puree and 1 large can tomatoes, chopped and 1 14 oz can tomato paste
  • 1 T Worcester suace (or A-1)
  • 2 T oregano
  • 2 T basil
  • 2 T parsley
  • 1 T fennel seed
  • 1 tsp thyme (optional variation)
  • 1 tsp marjoram (optional variation)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • crushed red pepper to taste
  • 1 egg, beaten (optional)
  1. Chop all the vegetables. Heat a large saucepan on meduim high heat, then add the oil.
  2. Add the vegetables.
  3. Sauté until the veggies are browned and soft. (Reserve a cup for the meatballs.)
  4. Turn the heat to medium low and add the tomatos, puree & paste. Mix well.
  5. Add the spices & Worcester and mix well again.
  6. Turn the heat to low (or put sauce in a crockpot) and simmer all day, stirring occasionally to prevent burning.

For some reason, Spaghetti sauce always tastes better the second day, so the longer you can simmer it on the first day, the better it will taste.

__________
For a meat sauce/meatballs add about 2 lbs. ground beef.

Mix ground beef with reserved vegetables and a bit of the spices listed (especially the fennel!). Fry it all togeter and add to sauce or add egg, if necessary, to form meatballs. Place the meatballs on a broiler pan and broil, using tongs to turn them, until done through, and all sides are well browned. The meatballs can be added to the sauce to simmer, or made just before serving.

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These are the recipes I actually use. They will occasionally updated as I adapt them. They are posted here for family and friends (and visitors!) to use as they wish.
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