Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Hindustani Chicken

Inspiration comes from the strangest places...  I was craving Indian food, which I call Hindustani, because once upon a time I was speaking to a group of my trainees and telling them that cigarettes were cheaper on the Indian reservations... and I looked around me at the 8 Indian nationals I was speaking to, and said, so do you call yourselves Indians?  And I was told that they used the term Hindustani.  

I wanted curry chicken, found a mediocre recipe on the internet and have made some adjustments.  First of all I need to buy plain yogurt on a regular basis.  I used half and half (the recipe called for cream) and some sour cream. But yogurt is what is needed. Also the recipe called for to much cinnamon, so I reduced that, and did not have enough curry flavor, so I increased that.  And here is my first Hindustani recipe:   

2 lbs Chicken Breast, cut into bite size chunks
1 package chopped spinach cooked and drained
1 14-16 oz can chick peas, drained and rinsed.
1 C plain yogurt (was half and half/cream)
14 - 16 oz tomato sauce.
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
3 TBS Butter (Ghee if available)
1 TBS cumin
1 tsp ginger powder - need to find paste or fresh equivalent 
1 tsp paprika (reduced)
1 tsp curry powder (increased)
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper - this creates a mild base add more to heat (reduced).
1/2 tsp tumeric (increased)
1/4 tsp cinnamon (reduced)

Sautee the onions in butter over med-low heat until translucent. Add garlic, cook another 1-2 minutes.
Mix all of the spices together in a small bowl.  Toss the chicken in the spices. Move the onions and garlic to the side of the pan, increase the heat to medium and sear the chicken on all sides.
Once the chicken is seared, add the tomato sauce (and fresh or tube ginger) and chick peas.  Reduce heat to simmer for 10-15 minutes.
Add the yogurt/dairy and simmer for an additional 10 minutes.

Serve with Naan bread and/or Basmati rice.  
Add 1/4 tsp tumeric per C of rice for a golden color. 

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Noodles, Dumplings, Spaetzle und Knoedel

I haven't made any of these yet, but I remember the first time Rich showed me how to crack an egg in a cup of flour and roll it into home  made noodles.  I was amazed.  Was that all there was to it?  Apparently so.

These are a few recipes I am putting on file for future reference...

Apparently Dumplings have baking soda... or you can use Bisquick.

  • 2 cups flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup milk or water
Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together; add liquid and mix to make a batter that can be dropped from a spoon. Drop onto boiling stew, being careful there is plenty of liquid. Cover and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, depending on size of dumplings.

Noodles1 Egg, 1 C flour and 1 pinch salt

Mix all ingredients. Roll thin with flour, then roll like a jelly roll. Cut into 1/2 inch strips. Let dry.
Drop into hot chicken broth. Boil for 15 minutes.
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Dash white pepper
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 quarts chicken broth or water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • In a bowl, combine flour, salt, nutmeg and pepper. Add eggs and milk; stir to mix well (batter will be thick). In a Dutch oven or large kettle, bring chicken broth to a boil. 
  • I think they are supposed to be squeezed through a collander with large holes... which I lack.
  • Drop batter by 1/2 teaspoonfuls into boiling liquid. Boil until spaetzle rise to the surface; remove to ice water. Drain well. In a skillet, heat spaetzle in butter until lightly browned. Serve with schnitzel and gravy or with Parmesan cheese. Yield: 2 servings.

And then there's Knoedel, leftover bread, formed into balls and cooked:
  • 6 oz. day-old bread (3 rolls)
  • 1/3 - 2/3 c. milk (75 ml)
  • 2 tsp. butter
  • 1/4 c. onion, minced
  • 2 T. parsley, minced or 1 T. dried
  • 1/4 tsp. dried marjoram
  • 1 egg
  • Freshly grated nutmeg (1/4 tsp. ground)


Making Semmelknödel

Cut or tear the rolls into small bits. Pour 1/3 cup milk over the bread and let it sit 5 minutes. Test it and see if it needs more milk. The bread should be softened but not dripping wet. Add enough milk to achieve this consistency.
Sauté the onion, parsley and marjoram in one or two teaspoons of butter.
Stir the egg and nutmeg with the bread crumbs, then add the onions and mix. Let the mixture rest for 10 minutes, then mix again briefly, taste and add more spices if necessary. The dough should be firm, with pieces of the crust still visible.
With wet hands, form 4 Knödel (round dumplings) and cook 15 - 20 minutes in simmering water. Do not let the water boil. You can make Knödel in any size, just adjust the cooking time accordingly.
Note: The amount of milk you need depends on how dry the bread or rolls are and how big they are. Normal sized rolls weigh about 2 ounces.
If the dough is too wet to hold together, add some bread crumbs, either from the package, or day-old.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Kate's Turkey Patties (croquettes)

I wanted Turkey Croquettes from the Thanksgiving leftovers, and asked Kate if she would make them, since they are sort of like Swedish meatballs (not really at all) and she makes the BEST Swedish meatballs, using an old family recipe from her Swedish grandmother.  So I sent her a recipe I found online "The Best Turkey Croquettes which are sort of like Swedish Meatballs, but aren't really like Swedish Meatballs at all, especially if you decide to flatten them and make them more like Crabby Patties."  She discarded the recipe and found her own, which, to her credit, she then modified... And it was fantastic.  The kids loved it and she made more to freeze.  Oh yeah... 

2 C. cooked turkey
1 C milk
1 C. soft bread crumbs (made from 5 pc fresh bread: freeze for 15 min & crumble)
1/4 C. butter
1/4 C. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 small onion minced 
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

Dredge & Batter:
1/2 C. flour
3/4c dry bread crumbs (use half panko/ half plain bread crumbs in a can)
1 egg, slightly beaten

Vegetable oil - 1" deep in skillet/ frying pan

Melt butter in large saucepan. 
Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and onion. 
Slowly add milk and Worcestershire sauce. 
Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick and bubbly (this take a little while, but it will happen). Remove from heat. 
In a large bowl blend sauce, soft bread crumbs and turkey. 
Cool mixture in freezer for about 15-20 min.  

Shape into 8-10 patties - (patties are easier to put on a roll or a bun.) 
Roll each lightly in flour; dip in egg and roll in bread crumb mixture. 
Fry in 1 inch of oil until golden brown (takes about 3-4 min a side). 
Put on paper towel to cool & drain oil.  

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Roasted Pepper and Garlic Carrott Soup

The best thing about soups, stews and chili is having the time to blog it while it is fresh in the mind, rather than trying to re-create the ingredients after a hearty meal when one just wants to read gawker and be netertained.  "netertained:" that was a typo but so apropos.

4 Roasted Garden Grown Red Peppers  (abt. 1/2 LB, prob abt 1-1.5 factory farmed peppers)
4 large cloves of Roasted garlic
4 smallish garden grown carrots - sliced  (abt. 1-2 store bought carrots)
4 C Chicken Stock.
1 med. store bought shallot - sliced
1 really big store bought boiling potato (i.e. red, yukon gold, NOT Russett or Eastern White)  
     Find Potato Info link
1/4 C white wine
1/4 C grated hard Italian cheese (i.e. pecorino or romano)
1 TBS Butter
1-2 TBS vegetable (light olive) oil 
1 tsp Bouquet Garni 
1/2 tsp ea. Hungarian Paprika & Hot Hungarian Paprika 
1/2 tsp black pepper
pinch of salt

Split and de-seed peppers, flatten, arrange on baking sheet with unpeeled garlic.
Spread a light coat of oil over the peppers 
Roast under broiler for about 8 minutes, until pepper skins blackened.
Remove the paper from the garlic, and set aside 
Place peppers in a sealed container to steam for 10 minutes.
Remove the outer skins of the peppers and discard the skins. they should slide off. mostly.

Sautee the shallot, carrots and herbs/spices in butter until soft, about 4-5 minutes.
Deglaze the pot with wine, add broth, peppers, potatoes and garlic.
Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
Add cheese.

Stick your wand in the pot and rotate until the soup is smooth and creamy -or- Using an immersion blender, blend until smooth 

This could also be made more delicious AND  unhealthy by adding a half cup of cream (or half and half) before blending, or sour cream on top.  But once you add the dairy, it will not re-heat well if you freeze.  

So I recommend that it be served ala Kate,  with sour cream on top.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Meatloaf Revisited

I finally revisited the namesake dish, and have a few observations.

1.5 LB Meatloaf mix or a combo of Beef/Pork
1 C Soft Breadcrumbs (definitely makes a difference)
1/2 med onion chopped fine  (1/2 - 1 C)
1 Egg
2 garlic cloves cut lg.
4-5 TBS BBQ sauce
2 TBS Milk
1 TBS Whole grain mustard
1 TBS Dijon Mustard
1 tsp Paprika
1/2 tsp Pepper
1/2 tsp salt
Top with strips of Bacon if available.

Preheat Oven.
Mix in Bowl, Place in Loaf Pan Bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Soft breadcrumbs are better than broken crackers which are better than commercial breadcrumbs.
The quantity of sauce here 8 TBS = 1/2 cup did not over power the flavor of the meat.  I often add too much mustard/BBQ sauce.  Add another TBS.
MISSING: Wocestershire Sauce and Steak Sauce!
No milk flavor. I like a little hint of milk, but I am beginning to think that it is not right for these flavors.

I also meant to take 2 TBS of raw meat and brown / crisp it in a pan to make a base for gravy.  Since I forgot to do that I will try it with the leftover grease and some cooked meat.

pepper / paprika
deglaze with broth

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Spice Blender

To keep track of all my home blended spice blends.

First one I ever copied was Emeril's Essence or "Bayou Blast":

2 1/2 tablespoons paprika  
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried thyme

It's very tasty, but  next time I am going to try this Cajun Spice recipe: 
    2 tablespoons onion powder
    2 tablespoons garlic powder
    2 tablespoons dried oregano leaves
    2 tablespoons dried sweet basil
    1 tablespoon dried thyme leaves
    1 tablespoon black pepper
    1 tablespoon white pepper
    1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
    1 tablespoon celery seed
    5 tablespoons sweet paprika

                      More to follow.

                      Why Blog...

                      I started this blog 5 and a half years ago, as a tribute to my step father, Moose, and as a way to keep track of my culinary adventures.  Also to have recipes handy when I was at someone else's house cooking.

                      After I was divorced, and feeding two boys, I realized 1) how much my step father loved us and 2)  how much I regretted not learning from him.  He was a wealth of knowledge and wisdom that I miss to this day.

                      Part therapy, part legacy, part notebook, I started this blog.  If my sons ever want my recipes, most of them should be here.  

                      Things have changed quite a bit since I started this Blog.  I'm re-married and now a step father in my own right.  Being a step father is a different experience, and again, the wisdom Moose gave me has made me a better person and hopefully a better step father. 

                      Currently the boys are 14 and 11, so they were 8 and 6 when I started.   Now I have four son, aged 16, 15, 14 and 11.  And a wonderful wife who says things like "I didn't like until you made it for me.  

                      I have also decided to atone for my past sins by teaching my sons to cook.  It will make them better people, and better able to compete in the world.  There is an amazing amount of physics and creativity in the kitchen.  I have been amazed and pleased by their cooking, and there choice of food.  Hungarian Paprika Chicken with fried dough, Weiner Schnitzel, Shrimp Scampi, Pizza from almost scratch.  Who knew that teens had such well developed palettes, given the opportunity and encouragement?  Food is love.

                      When I first started this blog, this was my profile.  Now it is time to change it.

                      Moose was my step-father.  He cooked for 5 of us, and we were never hungry. He made the best meatloaf, and convinced me dog food was his secret ingredient.  He died July 1, 2005, and I told the story about my first dog food meatloaf when I eulogized him.  Here's a hint, he was pulling my leg...

                      and now...

                      This blog is a tribute to my step-father Dave Oyler, aka Moose. Cooking is love.  He inspired me to cook and to be a father, by example.  One of my few regrets is that I did not  seek to learn how to cook with Moose.   Now that I am a father, I am actively teaching my sons to cook... and all that follows.

                      Wednesday, October 17, 2012

                      Cajun or "Brown" Jambalaya

                      I have finally learned that there are two kinds of Jambalya.  The kind with tomatoes and often shrimps, of which I have been most familiar.  Jambalaya with tomatoes is called Creole Jambalaya, and then there is the kind without tomatoes, and often without the trinity, called Cajun or "Brown" Jambalaya.  

                      Apparently the Creole is served in NOLA, and the Cajun is served farther out from the city.  I really need to get down to Louisiana, and Mobile too.

                      And I love them both...

                      Cajun Brown Jambalaya

                      1.5 LBS Chicken - cut into pieces that fit in your mouth
                      1 LBS Andouille sausage - cut into pieces that fit in your mouth
                        (pieces that fit in your mouth - individual results may vary)
                      3 C long grain rice
                        (Basmati is the house long grain rice, ergo everything is "Indian Fusion")
                      6 C prepared chicken broth / stock 
                        (I am liking the "Better than Bullion" brand of concentrate)

                      4 TBS = 1/4 C Vegetable Oil
                        (Canola oil is really rapeseed oil.  But the original name is hard to market) 

                      2 Med onion, chopped fine
                      2 Stalk celery, chopped fine
                      2-3 Garlic cloves, chopped

                      2-3 TBS Cajun Seasoning / Emeril's Essence 
                        (Recipe in another post, link to follow)

                      1 TBS worcestershire
                      1 TBS parsley 
                      1 tsp thyme
                      1 tsp basil 
                      1/2 - 1 tsp black pepper

                      1/2 - 1 tsp garlic powder
                      1/2 + tsp cayenne pepper (more to taste)

                      4.5 - 6 Qt Dutch Oven  (4.5 Qt is tight)
                         Do this in a dutch oven, preferably NOT a non-stick pot.

                      Toss the chicken in the cajun seasoning/ spice blend, to coat.
                      Over med.+ heat saute the sausage in the oil 5+ minutes 
                        (until browned, and mostly cooked)
                      Remove sausage, and add chicken
                      SCRAPE the brown bits off the bottom of the pan as you go. 
                        (that's gonna improve the rice.) 
                      Remove the chicken
                      SCRAPE the brown bits off the bottom of the pan as you go. 
                      Add the vegetables, the remaining spices and saute about 2-3 minutes 
                        (until wilted or "sweated" - putting the spices in now makes them more flavory)
                      Add the broth, slowly, to deglaze any brown bits you missed
                      Bring to a boil
                      Return the meats
                      Add the rice, stirring as you do 
                      Bring to a boil
                      Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15/20 minutes, just like rice.

                      Tuesday, October 16, 2012

                      Pesto uno

                      1) There is too much Basil.
                      2) I love Pesto.
                      3) The rediscovered food processor.

                      2 Cups Packed Basil
                      1/4 C Extra Virgin Olive Oil, + 1-2 TBS if desired (texture is very personal)
                      1/4 C + 1 TBS Pine Nuts.  (These can be lightly toasted if desired.  they brown VERY fast)
                      2 LG gloves Garlic
                      1/4 C + 1-2 TBS freshly grated sharp cheese.

                      Blend Garlic and nuts in processor, add oil, Basil and cheese.  Pulse to desired consistency.

                      Seriously.  That's it.  Best to use a spatuala.

                      Other recipes say this can be done with Walnuts or Pistachios.  Not a Walnut fan.

                      Also it can be frozen for up to 3 months, if the cheese is not added and 2 TBS oil is layered on top.

                      I plan to try pistachios with lemon basil.

                      Tuesday, October 2, 2012

                      Baked Eggplant

                      This is a basic baked eggplant recipe, which I used for the foundation of eggplant parm.

                      1 Eggplant, sliced in 1/2" thick slices
                      8 oz shredded Mozerella Cheese
                      1 C pasta sauce.

                      Grease a baking dish with 1 TBS+ Olive Oil

                      Pan 1: 1/2 C flour seasoned with 1.5 Tsp Black Pepper & Salt

                      Pan 2: Egg wash 1 Egg with 1/4 C Water or Milk

                      Pan 3: combine
                      1/3 C Breadcrumbs
                      1/3 C Parmesian cheese
                      1.5 -2 TBS Italian Seasoning
                      1 Tsp Garlic Powder

                      Dredge eggplant slices through flour, then egg wash, then breadcrumb mixture, place in oiled baking dish.
                      Bake at 350 for 15 minutes
                      Top slices with cheese, bake until melted.
                      Remove, top with pasta sauce, return to oven if you want it heated through.  Or serve as is.

                      Wednesday, September 26, 2012

                      Bourbon Brown Sugar Marinade

                      For London Broil - A simple marinade.

                      1/4 C = 4 TBS

                      1/4 C Bourbon
                      1/4 C Brown Sugar
                      1/4 C Soy Sauce

                      2-4 Garlic cloves pressed
                      2 TBS Dijon Mustard
                      1TBS Wocestershire Sauce
                      1 TBS Olive Oil
                      1/2 TSP Black Pepper

                      Blend all ingredients together, marinade up to 4 LBS meat

                      Friday, August 31, 2012


                      My dear friend Lamia, of Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt by way of UD taught me to make Hummus long before it was a standard appetizer (you know before brushetta became the "in" app.).

                      the ingredients are simple Chick Peas, Olive Oil, Tahini, Garlic and Lemon Juice....

                      I never had a ratio.  I always went by taste - you can add more of everything, except the beans, because then you have to add more of everything...

                      So I'm going to put some down a few samples from the internet and correct the blog later.

                      1 15 oz can of beans
                      1 garlic clove (range 1-2)
                      1 TBS extra virgin Olive Oil (range 0-2)
                      2 TBS Tahini  (range 1.5 - 4)
                      2 TBS Lemon Juice (range 1.5 - 4)
                      liquid as needed (from can or water)
                      salt to taste

                      Combine in food processor and process to desired consistency.

                      spatula the hummus into a bowl, make a depression in the middle and add olive oil and pine nuts if you have them.

                      You can also add ground beef or lamb (kibbeh?) in the depression to make it a little more hearty.
                      To spice it up I either sprinkle Hot Hungarian Paprika over top
                      Blend in a little Thai Red Cock Sauce (Sriracha).
                      How's that for cross cultural?

                      Friday, July 13, 2012

                      Spaghetti Carbonara

                      this is not rocket science, I watched an Italian guy make this one time, he was dating one of the girls who owned the house.  Handsome, Italian Accent, and fancy cooking (for college).  No wonder he had the girls...

                      1 LB spaghetti or linguini- nothing finer
                      4 cloves garlic chopped finely
                      4 strips of bacon or 1/4 LB Pancetta finely chopped
                      2 TBS olive oil
                      2-3  Eggs
                      1 cup grated hard Italian cheese
                      ground pepper

                      Boil the pasta to al dente or less 7-8 min
                      While the pasta is boiling, fry the bacon / pancetta until crispy in a large skillet
                      add the garlic and cook 1 minute more
                      whisk the egg and the cheese in a bowl
                      when the pasta is done, drain, reserving some liquid (put a bowl under the collander)
                      add the  past to the skillet and mix in all the bacon and grease
                      TRANSFER everything in the skillet back to the pasta pot.
                      stir in the egg and cheese mixture.
                        you may want to heat the pot on low to aid the cooking process.
                      sprinkle with ground pepper

                      serve hot

                      Friday, July 6, 2012

                      Garlic Sauce

                      2 TBS Rice Vinegar
                      2 TBS Brown Sugar
                      2 TBS Soy Sauce
                      1 TBS Veg Oil (not olive)  
                      2 Tsp Saki or Dry White Wine
                      1/2 Tsp Siricha
                      1/4 Tsp Sesame oil
                      3-4 Garlic Cloves finely chopped

                      1.5 Tsp Corn Starch and 1 TBS H2O shaken in jar = Thickener

                      Saute Garlic in Veg Oil 1 minute, add other ingredients Except Thickener, bring to boil.
                      Reduce to simmer, add thickener, stir to thicken.
                      Serve over - Meat, Veg, Rice

                      Saturday, April 21, 2012

                      Jambalaya 2 - Freezer comfort food

                      This is Emeril's recipie, modified to my cooking style


                      1/2 - 1 LB medium shrimp, peeled, deveined
                      1-2 frozen chicken breasts defrosted, diced
                      1 tablespoon Creole seasoning, recipe follows
                      2 tablespoons olive oil
                      1 med chopped onion
                      1/2 chopped green bell pepper
                      2 stalks chopped celery
                      2-4 chopped garlic cloves
                      1 can cup diced tomatoes
                      3-4 bay leaves
                      2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
                      1 teaspoon hot sauce (red cock)
                      1 1/4 cup rice (basmati)
                      4 cups chicken stock
                      2-3 Andouille sausage links, sliced
                      Salt and pepper

                      In a bowl combine shrimp, chicken and Creole seasoning, and work in seasoning well. In a large saucepan heat oil over high heat with onion, pepper and celery, 3 minutes. Add garlic, tomatoes, bay leaves, Worcestershire and hot sauces. Stir in rice and slowly add broth. Reduce heat to medium and cook until rice absorbs liquid and becomes tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. When rice is just tender add shrimp and chicken mixture and sausage. Cook until meat is done, about 10 minutes more. Season to taste with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning.

                      Emeril's ESSENCE ,Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
                      2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
                      2 tablespoons salt
                      2 tablespoons garlic powder
                      1 tablespoon black pepper
                      1 tablespoon onion powder
                      1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
                      1 tablespoon dried oregano
                      1 tablespoon dried thyme
                      Combine all ingredients thoroughly.

                      Yield: 2/3 cup

                      Tuesday, March 20, 2012

                      Oven Roasted Herb Pork Loin

                      2 - 3 LB pork loin roast
                      handful fresh rosemary
                      handful fresh thyme
                      TBS grey poupon country style grained mustard
                      1 elephant garlic clove (abt 3-5 regular cloves)
                      fresh ground pepper
                      2 TBS Olive oil

                      1/2 C white wine
                      2 tbs flour + 1/2 c water mixed (shaken) in jar
                      2-4 TBS mustard
                      pepper to taste

                      preheat oven to 400

                      rub roast in olive oil
                      chop rosemary and thyme rub on roast
                      cut garlic into slivers and slit meat, insert slivers into slits
                      sprinkle roast with ground pepper
                      roast 30 minutes fat side down
                      flip and roast to 146
                      remove roast and tent for 15 min. before slicing

                      deglaze pan (iron skillet) with white wine
                      add water/flour mix wisking
                      add mustard
                      add pepper

                      wisk until simmering and serve

                      Wednesday, February 8, 2012

                      Beef Barley Soup with mushrooms

                      Beef - needs more, cook at a higher temp for crispier
                      seasoning needs more, needs to go in sooner.
                      carrots - need to go in later
                      onions and garlic - needs to be chopped finer
                      barley - needs more, do not rinse, starch thickens

                      Oh it is tasty but this is a work in progress. The first time was delicious but had too much barley an became a barley dish in beef sauce. They absorbed all the broth.

                      Beef 1 - 1.5 lbs leftover or uncooked cheap meat
                      4 qts broth
                      3-4 large carrots - sliced coarsley
                      2 sm onions copped FINE
                      2 cloves garlic
                      1 Cup pearled Barley
                      8 oz pack of fresh button mushrooms, quartered
                      1-2 tsp penzeys bouquet garni
                      4 tbs olive oil divided
                      1/4 cup red wine

                      heat 1/2 oil
                      sear and brown beef on all sides on high heat, remove, and set aside 5 min
                      add remaining oil and spices and saute onions 10 min
                      add garlic sautee 2 min
                      deglaze pot with wine
                      add beef, broth, carrots, barley then bring to boil open, cover and simmer 20 min
                      add mushrooms, simmer 20 minutes.

                      Saturday, January 21, 2012

                      Chicken Carcass Soup with Noodles or Rice

                      A roasted chicken carcass, be it from your own oven or a rotisserie chicken from the super market still has flavor and possibilities left in it. It's also a good way to utilize the older vegetables at the bottom of the drawer, that have lost their plate appeal. You should use the oldest vegetables in the drawer for the "stock," though it's not really stock, because you will be cooking the flavor out of them and into the base, and then discarding them with the carcass.

                      1 picked chicken carcass, set meat aside.
                      2-3 carrots
                      1 onion
                      1-2 stalks of celery
                      1-2 cloves garlic
                      rosemary sprigs
                      a bay leaf or two
                      Whatever you may have roasted in the chicken, we usually use apples and/or oranges
                      Other miscellaneous vegetables of dubious age: radishes, turnips, chives, mushrooms

                      Coarsely chop the vegetables, break up the chicken carcass and place the above ingredients in a stock pot and cover with Water.

                      Bring to a boil then simmer for at least one hour

                      2-4 carrots
                      1-2 stalks of celery
                      1-2 garlic cloves sliced
                      1-2 cups prepared noodles or rice
                      1-2 cups leftover chicken meat
                      2 TSP Chicken stock base, or 1 can chicken broth
                      salt an pepper to taste.

                      spices and herbs: There are a couple of options here, depending on what you have available and what flavor you are looking for:
                      a) 1-2 tsp Szeged Chicken rub - Garlicy and compliments chicken nicely
                      b) rosemary, sage, thyme. Add in that order a pinch at a time.
                      if I ever figure out measurements I will post them
                      c) 1 tsp Penzey's Bouquet Garni* - this is a magnificent & flavorful blend of herbs

                      Dice up fresh vegetables into bite size pieces

                      Using a collander strain the "stock" into a large bowl or another pot

                      Pick off any usable chicken meat and set aside, discard the boiled vegetables and bones.

                      Return stock to pot, add fresh vegetables. Alternatively, if you are throwing in last night's leftover vegetables, add them after 25 minutes with the rice/ noodles / meat, because they are already cooked.

                      Stir in chicken base

                      Add seasonings to taste.

                      Simmer 20-30 minutes until the vegetables have the desired crunchiness. This really is a personal preference. We like ours al-dente, not mushy like canned soup.

                      When the vegetables are "done", add the rice or noodles and chicken meat.

                      Give kids dinner warning, it will be ready in 5-10 minutes.

                      * Penzey's Bouquet Garni: Hand-mixed from: savory, rosemary, thyme, Turkish oregano, basil, dill weed, marjoram, sage and tarragon. http://www.penzeys.com/cgi-bin/penzeys/p-penzeysbouquet.html


                      I didn't food blog much this year. I became gainfully employed, and between the commute and the long hours I was out of the house 50-60 hours a week. Things were settling down when Hurricane Irene wiped out my dad's village, 280 of 350 home deluged with 5 feet of muddy disgusting polluted water. I spend most of the fall going up to Schoharie (Sko- Hair - ee) on the weekends to help dig out my Dad and Anne and Tatiana (my step mom and step sister). Not much time for cooking or blogging, but I did keep some notes in a notebook, and now that things are easing up, I hope to find time to write some of it down. Today is my 3rd wedding anniversary and Kate is sewing and re-gluing an antique clock, that was a gift from Dad and Anne. And I am simmering chicken broth, which is always a good time to write. so on to my next food post...