Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Savory Noodle Kugel

Noodle Kugel
This is more complicated than I thought. I used to make this at the camp where I was the head cook.

1 package (a pound? How do they come?)) of wide egg noodles cooked to almost done - pretty al dente.

Make into crumbs in a blender
2 slices bread (white or whole wheat)
Then add
Half a stick of soft butter to make them brown well and blend again

2 medium onions or 2 leeks (or a combination) and
2 minced garlic buds

Saute until transparent in
1 ½ sticks of butter

Cool and set aside briefly.

In a separate bowl, mix
5 eggs
8 oz small curd cottage cheese
1 C half and half or heavy cream
2 tsp salt
Pepper to taste
2 Tbs finely minced fresh parsley
1 Tbs finely minced fresh rosemary

Add the cooled butter/leeks/onions/garlic mixture and
Mix thoroughly.
Add the noodles and stir well.
Pour into a well-greased baking dish.
Sprinkle the buttered bread crumbs on top.

Bake at 350 for about an hour or until it sets.

You can probably substitute 8 egg whites for the eggs, healthy margarine (NOT lite) for the butter, and 2% milk for the cream to reduce fat and calories. But it won’t taste as good and this is not something you serve very often.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Fruit Cake

With apologies for my tweaking to November 1969 Gourmet Magazine

(RIP Gourmet Magazine)

In a large bowl combine

1 pound thin sliced candied pineapple

1 pound golden raisins (I use dried blueberries and cherries or craisins instead)

½ pound finely shrdded citron peel

½ pound candied cherries cut in half

½ pound sultanas

½ pound currents

½ pound shredded candied orange peel

Pour over the fruits

1 Cup Cognac, cover and refrigerate for two days, stirring occasionally.

Remove fruit from refrigerator and sprinkle with

½ cup flour

Add ½ pound pecans

Mix well with your hands.


1 ½ Cups flour

1 tsp cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon mace

½ tsp baking soda

1 pinch of ground cloves

In the mixer


½ cup butter until very light

Beat in 2 Cups sugar

6 eggs

2 squares unsweetened melted chocolate

1/4 Cup cognac

Add the flour mixture a little at a time until it is thoroughly mixed

Pour over the fruit and nut mixture and mix thoroughly with your hands (I use a large wooden spoon)

Butter two loaf tins, two 9 inch spring form pans, one (angel food) tube pan, or two 9 inch square pans and line with parchment paper, and butter it.

Pour the batter into the pans and bake at 275 for 1 ½ hours for the small pans or 3 hours for the tube pan.

Test the cakes for doneness by inserting a small skewer into the middle.

Remove from pans and let them cool for a couple of hours.

Remove the pans rom the tins, leaving the paper on and wrap them in clean muslin (a dishtowel works, or a cloth napkin) which has been saturated with cognac.

Store in an airtight tin for up to a year, being sure to keep a small towel on top saturated with cognac, and renew the cognac occasionally.

Note: I frequently keep adding cognac and keep the fruitcake for several years.

Pie Crust

Use a dough cutter or a fork to make the following the consistency of cornmeal:

1 Cup flour

1/3 cup butter

1 Tsp salt

Add 3 Tbs very cold water and clump it together. If it doesn’t clump add more water until it does (use no more than 5 total tbs cold water).

Roll out 1/3 for a bottom pie crust.

Roll out the other third for a top crust.

Do NOT knead or handle the dough more than necessary or it will become tough and cardboard-y.

Chocolate Maple Pecan Pie

Combine in the mixer

1 Cup of maple syrup

3 eggs

½ Cup of sugar

2 Tbs butter melted

1 Tsp Vanilla Extract

2 Cups broken pecans


1 Cup pecan halves

Pour into

1 unbaked pie crust into which you have spread ½ Cup melted semi-sweet chocolate

Bake at 350 for about an hour. It’s done when you stick a knife into it and the knife comes out clean.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Egg Nog

This is wonderful stuff. My folks had an egg nog party every Christmas and my dad made his special recipe, which I vaguely remember he got from the Esquire Cookbook:
N.B. USE PASTEURIZED EGGS! They're available at a lot of groceries or health food stores. You don't want Salmonella!

Assemble in advance
1 large bowl and
2 smaller ones
6 Pasteurized eggs
3/4 Cup of sugar
1 pint whipping cream
1 pint milk
1 pint Whiskey or Rum
Nutmeg and a grater

1. Separate 6 pasteurized eggs. I do this individually in case I break a yolk.
2. Beat the whites until stiff with an immaculate beater and bowl. They won't
whip up if there's any oil or grease at all.
Slowly add 1/2 cup of sugar when they begin to get frothy.
Set aside.
3. Beat the yolks until they are very pale and thick.
Add 1/4 cup of sugar.
4. Beat 1 pint of whipping cream until it holds stiff peaks.
5. Fold the whites, yolks, and whipping cream together.
6. Add 1 pint of milk.
7. (Option 1) Add 1 pint of good sipping whiskey or rum.
(Option 2) Add a shot of whatever liquor you choose to an old fashioned
glass and fill with egg nog. Stir well.
(Option 3) Forget the booze, enjoy the egg nog.
8. Grate fresh nutmeg on the top of the egg nog.
9 Enjoy!

Thursday, October 15, 2009


It's not hard to cook a turkey, but it's pretty easy to overcook one, too.

Set the oven for 350.

Make sure your turkey is thawed. If it isn't completely thawed, allow more time to roast it.

If it doesn't have a pop up timer, you can buy one and stick it in the breast.

Remove the stuff the producers shove inside the turkey. The heart and liver are good chopped and added to the gravy. The neck catches all the toxins, so I toss it. If it's too frozen, don't worry. After a couple of hours, pull the neck and giblets out.

It helps to baste the turkey, and I like melted butter brushed on the skin about every half hour or 20 minutes. I also like a good coating of seasoned salt or poultry seasoning on the skin. A third option (in combination with these two is fine) is to loosen the skin and shove fresh sage between the skin and the meat.

Do not stuff a turkey. It slows down the cooking and allows for the development of slamonella. It's ok to put a few stalks of fresh rosemary or sage (or combination) inside the turkey.

Follow the minute per pound directions on the wrapper, and roast it covered until it is about half an hour away from being done.

When you're about half an hour from being done, uncover the turkey to brown the skin and crisp it up.

When the timer pops, take the turkey out of the oven and let it rest for about 20 minutes before you carve it.

Use the drippings to make Gravy (there's a recipe for gravy on this blog).

I recommend Dry Dressing (a recipe for this is also on this blog).

If you need an invitation to Thanksgiving, let me know. No promises, though.

Carve and enjoy.

Left overs can be frozen (preferably sliced) for sanwiches later or turkey tetrazzini (I'll add a recipe for that as we get closer to leftovers) or . . . whatever.

Comments? Make them below.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I've been reading this wonderful blog and encourage you to try it if you are interested in easy crockpot meals:  A Year of CrockPot Recipes

Monday, April 13, 2009

Very Simple Cream Cheese Frosting

This is great for Carrot Cake or Ann's Annual Lamb Cake for Easter

8 oz COLD cream cheese
5 Tbs room temperature real butter
2 Tsp real vanilla (or other flavoring
2 1/2 Cups powdered sugar

In a mixer beat the butter and cream cheese briefly with the vanilla and add the powdered sugar about a third at a time. Don't beat on too high a speed, or the sugar will be all over the place.

Mix until the right consistency, but don't overbeat as it will break down.

Spread on whatever cake you want. Enjoy.

This is from the Joy of Cooking.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Chocolate Cheesecake

This is a slightly different version of the recipe at the bottom of this blog.

Mix well together:
1 C sugar
5 eggs
3 8-oz pkgs of warm (softened) cream cheese
1 tsp vanilla (use the real stuff, not that fake shit)

Pour into an 9 x 13 pan.

Melt 4 oz semi-sweet chocolate (chocolate chips or bars).
Pour it on top of the batter and marbleize it with a knife.

Bake at 300 for an hour.


Monday, March 2, 2009

Roasted Chicken

Preheat oven to 350.
You will need:
A whole chicken
2 cloves of garlic (optional)
one large branch of fresh rosemary that you can cut into several smaller pieces

Use a whole chicken. Wash the inside and outside to remove stray bone chips and the gizzards and neck (which I toss. All the toxins in the animal end up in the neck and organs.).

Remove the tail and any large chunks of fat.

Separate the skin from the breast of the chicken with your hand, not as difficult as it sounds.

Between the skin and the breast meat insert little chunks of butter, slices of whole garlic, and sprigs of rosemary.

Stuff the rest of the rosemary inside the chicken.

Bake at 350 for about an hour. Use an instant thermometer to ensure that the breast meat is at least 170 degrees. The skin should be crispy.

Remove from the oven and let the chicken set for about five minutes. Slice or carve and serve.


Bacon two ways

I. Microwaving

Bacon comes in rashers, just as a point of information. All microwave ovens are different and times vary. This method allows the paper towels to absorb the fat, and you can have bacon as limp or crispy as you please.

Lay three strips of bacon on two layers of paper towels and place a third paper towel on top.

Nuke in the microwave oven on high for 4 - 5 minutes. Check the bacon. If it needs more time, try a minute at a time.

II. Oven baked/roasted

Preheat oven to 400.

This works for a larger number of people.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, available at the grocery store. If you don't have any, open up a brown paper bag and use that (a poor second choice, however).

Lay the rashers of bacon on the cookies sheet so they are almost touching.

Bake in a regular oven for about 20 minutes. Again, check the bacon for the degree of doneness you prefer.


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Friday, January 9, 2009


Gravy is pretty easy, but you have to remember:
Never add flour to hot liquid because you'll get lumps.
Gravy is best made from poultry or beef, not pork.

Use juices from whatever meat you have cooked.

Mix together:
1 C water
1/4 C flour

If you have juices and "crusties" from meat in the bottom of a pan, add some water, chicken broth, or either with a little wine.

Deglaze the pan, which means to put it on the heat with the liquid and loosen the stuff on the bottom.
Add the flour- water mixture to thicken.
Bring to a boil to kill the raw flour taste.

If necessary, add more flour-water mixture or more broth.

Adjust seasonings. (It always says that in cookbooks, and it means taste it. If it needs more salt, add a little at a time, stir it in, and keep tasting so it doesn't get too salty. Add pepper if necessary.)

I like to add poultry seasonings or rubbed sage to poultry gravy.

Serve hot.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Herbed Potatoes

In a plastic bag mix
1/4 C oil
1/4 C prepared mustard
1 T horseradish

4 quartered potatoes for about 3/4 of the time recommended to cook them through.

Coat the potatoes thoroughly in the mixture.

Grill until the potatoes are golden brown and completely done.
Bake on parchment paper on a cookie sheet until they are golden brown and thoroughly done.

You probably have to turn them once or twice while baking/ grilling.

Serve hot. Enjoy!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Baked Fish

This is good with practically any fish fillet or steak. I prefer salmon or cod, but tilapia also works.
(a steak is cut crosswise across the spine and will have a lot of bones; a fillet is cut length-wise)

Place fish (preferably a fillet) on a broiling pan.
Use your finger to feel for bones. I use a special pair of kitchen pliers (regular needle nose pliers I use only in the kitchen) to pull bones from the flesh of the fish.

Sprinkle with
1 - 2 Tbs lemon juice
a dusting of seasoned salt
1 - 2 Tbs butter in little pats all over the fish

Bake in a 450 or 500 oven for 10 minutes per inch of thickness.

Serve with lemon wedges or tartar sauce.

Pork Chops 2

Put pork chops in a shallow baking pan. Do not overlap them.

milk to barely cover (use 2 % or whole, not skim)

Season to taste with regular or seasoned salt and pepper.

Bake about an hour at 350.

The milk should form a tasty crust and keep the pork chops moist.

Pork Chops 1

In a heavy plastic bag or a shallow bowl stir together
1/2 C Wishbone Italian Salad Dressing
1/2 C soy sauce

Add pork chops and marinate for 15 minutes to an hour.

Grill or bake.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Shannon's Mac and Cheese

Gramma Mary Jane's Mac and Cheese (so easy, you don't even have to cook the noodles first!)

In a 9/13 pyrex or metal baking pan (sprayed with Pam or greased with butter/marj) combine:

2 1/2 cups dry, uncooked elbow macaroni
4 cups 1 or 2 percent milk (not whole, not skim)
1 cubed package(brick) of cheese (cheddar, colby, etc.)
salt and pepper to taste

top with 1 stick of melted marj
bake in a 350 oven for 45 minutes to an hour, until top starts browning and liquid is absorbed.


Friday, January 2, 2009

Sue Gertz' shrimp

Defrost a bag of frozen, cooked shrimp.

Open a jar of cocktail sauce.

Dip shrimp in cocktail sauce.
To make this fancier, arrange shrimp on a plate and make separate dipping bowls for each diner.

Eat. Enjoy.

Grandma Garland's Potato Salad

1 C Vinegar
1 C water
1 C sugar
2 Tbs flour
1 tsp salt
1 egg well beaten

Put above in a pan and bring to a boil. Do not overcook as it will separate.
When it is thick, stir in
1 Tbs butter
1 really good squirt of yellow mustard

Separately, peel 5 pounds of potatoes and cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes, approximately.
Boil until they are cooked through. You can tell when you stick a fork in them.

Drain cooked potatoes and put in a bowl.
Add (all optional to suit your taste)
1 C chopped celery
1 C sliced radishes
1 sm chopped onion
1/2 C grated carrots
2 chopped hard boiled eggs (boil 15 minutes; remove shells and rinse; chop into large pieces, maybe eighths of each egg)
3 Tbs salad olives
3 rashers of crisp bacon crumbled

Add dressing and stir together.

Serve hot or chilled.

mmmmmmmmmm. Enjoy!

Baked chicken 1 A

Substitute Rock Cornish Hens for the chicken pieces in Baked Chicken 2.
Rather than use them whole, halve them with a heavy sharp knife.

Baked Chicken 1

In a heavy flat pan heat
3 Tbs olive oil

1/4 C chopped celery
1/4 C chopped carrot
1/4 C minced onion or leek

Stir until onion is transluscent.

Add 1 1/2 C uncooked rice to oil veg mixture and stir until coated.

Add 3 C water or chicken broth

On top of the rice add pieces of a cut up frying chicken

Sprinkle seasoned salt on top of the chicken.

Remove from stovetop heat and bake at 350 for about an hour, until the chicken is cooked through (clear juices when poked with a fork) and rice is done (probably over done).


Oven Fried Chicken

In a bowl mix together
1 C flour
2 Tbs seasoned salt
3 good grinds of fresh pepper

In a second bowl froth
1 egg and
3 Tbs water

Rinse and pat dry a cut-up frying chicken

Dip in egg mixture then coat with flour mixture.

Place chicken pieces on a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper covering it.

Bake 1 hour at 350 until juices run clear when you poke a fork in the chicken.

Eat, enjoy.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Cream of Chestnut Tomato Basil Soup

Serves 6 to 8

In a large, heavy pot
Saute until transparent
3 rags of celery chopped fine
1 fresh leek chopped
2 Tbs olive oil

Add 8 oz V8 or tomato juice
2 cans stewed tomatoes (I like the kind with onions and basil)
2 largish potatoes peeled and cubed (3/4 inch cubes)
1 C chestnuts (real chestnuts, NOT water chestnuts)
2 C chicken broth

Cook until the potatoes are soft and adjust seasonings (like add salt if necessary)

Add several grinds of fresh pepper

The hard part:
Put through a blender. I use a submersible blender that you stick in the pan. You can ladle it back and forth into a blender or you might use a hand mixer. The chestnuts and potatoes thicken the soup, so they should be mashed completely.

Right before serving, bring to a boil and add 1 1/2 C whipping cream
1C milk

Chop 3 Tbs fresh basil and add it.

Serve with garnishes of
bacon bits
sour cream
grated pecarino romano or parmesan

This makes a lot and is rich, but it is a whole meal.