Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
- In a medium casserole or Dutch oven, heat the oil. Season the pork with salt and pepper and cook over medium-high heat until browned on 2 sides, about 2 minutes per side. Add the fennel and onion and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 7 minutes. Add the diced chile, garlic, chile powder, cumin and oregano and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Add the carrots, potatoes, tomatoes and tomatillos, cover and simmer over low heat until the pork is cooked through, at least 25 minutes. This can be left on the stove for up to 1 hour before serving.*
- While stew is cooking, prepare polenta. Bring salted water to boil over high heat. Slowly stir in polenta. Lower heat to medium-low while stirring. Cook over medium-low for 15 minutes, stirring continuously. Add cream cheese and half & half or cream while still stirring. Adjust seasoning (salt & pepper, if desired) and bring heat down to low. Allow to cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Place about 1/2 cup polenta in bottom of bowl. Cover with stew. Garnish with Manchego. Find a cozy spot to curl up and eat~ or sit with the family at the dining room table :-) Enjoy! *This is even tastier when reheated the next day since the flavors have all been able to meld!! Just reheat and serve~ the stew can also be frozen for up to 2 months.
I don't know about anyone else, but the weather here in Salem has been so very autumny! As I am sitting in my somewhat cozy dining room watching the rain fall causing the oak leaves in our yard to tumble to the ground, I feel a bit like a caterpillar starting a little cocoon~ I can still see what's going on around me, but I am quite snuggly in my own little space. Okay, so enough of the caterpillar comparisons and on to what I really planned on writing...
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
These were supposed to be made with raisin bran and regular milk, but we didn't have any, so I improvised. The muffins got great reviews from everyone that ate them~ moist, not overly sweet and with just a bit of a crunch, they are perfect for going with morning coffee or as an afternoon snack!
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 cups Honey Bunches of Oats cereal
1-8 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup water
2 cups unbleached flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons raw sugar (also known as turbinado sugar)
Preheat oven to 400F degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners or spray lightly with non-stick cooking spray. In a medium bowl combine sweetened milk, sour cream and water and stir in cereal; let stand until softened, about 8 minutes.
Stir oil and egg into cereal mixture. Add flour, b. powder, nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt. Mix just until blended. Divide batter among cups. Bake, until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean, 18-20 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack; serve either warm or cool. Makes 12 muffins
Today was no exception of any of the reasons~ Bible study was really great as I even brought some Honey Bunches Muffins to share. I mentioned to the gals that these were an experiment, and they were happy to be guinea pigs! Mary and I also made some delicious soup for dinner. Plus we bought some tofu and rice thread noodles that we plan on trying sometime in the next week or so when we ran by our local United Grocers to pick up a couple of things~ we always end up with a few more goodies than we plan when we stop by there.
This weekend should prove interesting as I am heading to Camp Winema on the Oregon coast to cook for about 80 people at Salem Alliance Churches' high school retreat. I've been doing it for the past 4 years, and it's one of the highlights of my year! The food is so much fun to make, and it's a blessing to be involved in such an amazing weekend!! I try to make stuff from scratch, and we always try new recipes every year. Look for photos and recipes next week!
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Roasted Carrots with Mint
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 ¼ pounds carrots, cut into finger-size pieces
1 ½ teaspoons coarse salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
¼ cup loosely packed fresh mint, thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 450F degrees. Arrange carrots on rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper & mint. Mix well. Bake, stirring every 5 minutes, until golden brown, 18-20 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
3 cups old fashioned oats (please don't use quick oats- they don't work well in this)
I have eaten a lot of oatmeal cookies in my life, but none come close to the sweet oatmeal-y and raisin-y taste of grandma's cookies. These were the first cookies I can remember trying to bake on my own as a 12-year-old budding cook. The best part was how they turned out~ chewy but a little crisp and an almost melt in your mouth consistency~ every time I tried making them. As I grew into adulthood, I went through an cookie "experiment" phase and have tried numerous other oatmeal cookie recipes thinking maybe there was a recipe out there somewhere that would be...dare I even say it...better than grandma's.
My children have been subjected to crispy, raisin-less, chocolate chip added, buttery oatmeal cookies throughout their growing years. Not that these were bad. In fact, some were pretty tasty. The only thing that was missing in any of these experimental oatmeal forays was that they weren't grandma's recipe.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
1 lb. fresh tomatillos, husked & rinsed (to remove natural sticky coating)
1- 4 oz. can green chiles
1 yellow onion, chopped into large chunks
2 scallions, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
3 cloves garlic
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
- Preheat oven to broil, with rack on top shelf.
- Lay tomatillos on rimmed baking sheet. Broil 5 minutes. Turn over & broil for 5 more minutes. Remove from oven & let cool.
- Place cooled tomatillos in bowl of food processor; add remaining ingredients.
- Pulse until blended but still slightly chunky. Place into container & refrigerate. This should last for about a week~ if it doesn't get eaten before that! This is delicious in the following recipe, but it is also wonderful on eggs, with chips, on a salad, etc.
2 tblsp. vegetable oil
12 (4-inch) Don Pancho corn tortillas
1 cup cooked & shredded chicken or turkey
1/4 sour cream mixed with 2 tablespoons milk
1/2 cup crumbled Queso Fresco (or shredded mozzarella)
Preheat oven to 200F. Heat 1/2 tblsp. oil in 10-inch skillet over medium-high, then cook tortillas, three at a time until softened but not too crisp. Transfer tortillas to rimmed baking sheet & place in oven; cover with foil. Continue cooking rest of tortillas, adding more oil as necessary, until all are done. When finished, top with a few shreds of chicken or turkey, a bit of cheese, a spoonful of salsa & a dollop of sour cream. Serve immediately. Muy Bueno!!!
Makes 12 appetizer servings or 4 servings in the Keatley household
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Saturday morning dawned early as I finished the last of my grocery lists~ that's right, I said "lists" as in more than one. This was due to the fact that I was planning on cooking 18 dinners on Tuesday as well as planning on a weeks worth of camping food. The kids and I hit the Salem Saturday Market to get the few items we didn't get in our CSA box from Gardenripe the week before then ran downtown to try to break our fasts with coffee and goodies from Little Cannoli Bakery. Imagine my distress when we got there to find a sign that said they were closed~ for good. Of course, the good news is that Joann, the owner's mom, was there and she told us Tim had not closed for good, but instead had relocated to South Salem at his new place, Bakery D'Amour. That is great news for those of us in Salem who love everything that comes out of the bakery! We ended up tyring to save time by hitting the downtown Great Harvest. I wasn't too disappointed as I tried a coconut rum cookie that was delicious!! Then we were on to United Grocers (a.k.a. Cash & Carry) to grab a few more things before heading back home to finalize what else we'd need before Tuesday's cooking craziness.
The boys and I spent most of the day scouring the supermarket shelves Monday (except the time I was actually at work for 4 1/2 hours teaching and running a Salem Middle School Fencing League Parent Orientation~ what was I thinking??). At least the evening was an enjoyable way to hang out with my teenage boys~ even if it included an interesting time at Winco as the boys entertained what seemed like half of the store with their rendition of "supermarket stomp" in the bulk section! Finally, I was done with all the shopping for our Once a Month Cooking (OAMC) adventure as well as most of our camping food!
The alarm went off at what seemed way too early, but I got up to start cooking anyway! After starting a pot of Italian Roast, I got going on Grandma Pitalo's (paternal grandma) spaghetti sauce. This takes at least 3-4 hours to get a really good flavor, so I knew it needed to be the first thing going. I had it bubbling on the stove by 7 o'clock (that would be a.m.), and I was on a roll~ especially since the next thing on the list was Grandpa Aziz' (maternal grandpa) pizza dough. After a bit, Mary got up and helped put together the calzones. David was up a little bit later and he did many of the dishes as did my "adopted" daughter, Danielle, who came over about noon to help out too. It went by pretty fast as we ended up getting the 18 dinners done by 2:30 p.m.I decided to reward the kids (and myself, if I have to be honest) by running up to EZ Orchards for shortcake plus I wanted to pick up some fruit for the upcoming camping trip. I know I could've made shortcake, but theirs is really good~ plus we were all a little tired from being in the kitchen all morning!!
The kids also decided to make stuff to get ready for camping that afternoon when we got back. Mary made oatmeal banana chocolate chip cookies while David started working on chocolate toffee s'more cookies. Danielle decided to work on one of our camping breakfasts with oatmeal huckleberry scones. The kitchen smelled divine!!
We usually end up going out or ordering pizza on cooking night, but I decided to use the tomatillos we had gotten in our CSA box to make up some salsa verde. I found a wonderfully simple salsa recipe that I was able to tweak just a bit with stuff I had at home. I then made some chalupas with small corn tortillas, turkey, queso fresco and sour cream. They were amazing! The cheese was really exciting for Mary and I because it tasted so close to what we had in Ecuador. The tortillas were so good plus they were fun to use as they are only 4" round~ I had picked them up at Cash & Carry just because they were cute, and we ended up using a bunch of them- I love when stuff comes together!!
I can't wait to be able to pull out a meal from the freezer instead of having to decide what to cook at the last minute for at least a few weeks. If this works out as well as I think it will, I am pretty sure that we'll be OAMC for the rest of the school year!
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
adapted from Gourmet magazine
- Preheat oven to 450F.
- Toss squash with 1 tablespoon oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a shallow baking pan. Toss tomatoes with 1 tablespoon oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt in another baking pan.
- Roast squash on top shelf in oven and tomatoes on bottom shelf, turning vegetables once halfway through roasting, until tender, about 10 minutes for tomatoes and 20 minutes for squash. Leave oven on.
- Meanwhile, cook onion and garlic with 1/2 teaspoon salt in 2 tablespoons oil in a large heavy skillet, covered, over low heat, stirring occasionally, until very tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
- Stir together rice, onion mixture, eggs, thyme, 1/2 cup cheese, 1 tablespoon oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Spread half of rice mixture in a 2 quart baking dish, then top with half of the squash. Spread remaining rice mixture over squash, then top with remaining squash. Top with tomatoes and drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons oil, then sprinkle with remaining cheese.
- Bake on top rack of oven until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
3-4 kohlrabi, ends trimmed and cut into 1/2 inch wedges
Monday, August 24, 2009
We got back yesterday from our annual huckleberring/camping weekend up near Mt. Adams in Washington (about a three hour trip from Salem) with my best friend and her extended family. We've been doing the trip off and on for about 10 or so years~ except for the 4 years Ron and Shelly were in Malaysia being dorm parents at Dalat School. We always have such a good time, and this year was no exception!
3 lbs Stew meat (chuck preferred)- cut into small chunks
½ lb ground pork
2 Tbl Flour
1 Tbl oil
1/3 cup dried minced onion
½ tsp garlic powder (divided)
1 can (14-15 oz) beef stock
2 cans (14-15 oz) chicken stock
1 8 oz cans tomato sauce
½ tsp cumin
1 4 oz can mild (or hot) green chilies
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, deveined, and minced
1 tsp ground black pepper
3 Tbl chili powder
4 8 oz cans tomato sauce
¼ cup chili powder
2 Tbl New Mexico chili powder
2 Tbl Cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
½ Tbl brown sugar
Brown meat in oil and drain. Place in large pot or dutch oven and add seasoning ingredients. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer, covered for 1 ½ hours (stirring occasionally). Uncover, add the sauce ingredients and simmer, uncovered for another 1 ½ to 2 hours (stirring occasionally).
It was a good thing we made so many as the kids (and the rest of us) were really hungry after a day in the fields! We brought rotisserie chicken for Saturday night to be served with garlic bread, assorted salads and fresh corn on the cob. All the kids (anyone under 20) got to have a "cultural educational experience" by helping to shuck the corn.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
- 1 stick butter
- 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar - divided
- 2 Tbs. light corn syrup
- Lg. Loaf - French Country Bread
- 6 lg. eggs
- 1 - 1/2 cups half & half
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 Tbs. Grand Marnier
- In a small heavy saucepan and over moderate heat, melt butter, 1 cup brown sugar and corn syrup.
- Stir until smooth and evenly pour the butter/sugar mixture into a 9”x13”x2” baking pan to cover the bottom of the pan.
- Slice bread into 1” cubes.
- Arrange the bread cubes in one layer to cover the bottom of the mixture you may need to squish the cubes together a little for everything to fit.
- In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs, half & half, vanilla, Grand Marnier and salt until combined.
- Pour or ladle the egg mixture evenly over the bread to ensure that all of the bread receives the egg mixture.
- Cover with plastic wrap and chill at least 8 hours or overnight in the refrigerator.
- In the morning, pre-heat the oven to 350°.
- Remove the bread mixture from the refrigerator and let sit on the counter for 20 minutes.
- Bake, uncovered, for 35 to 40 minutes or until puffed and the edges are golden brown.
- Sprinkle with remaining brown sugar. Either brown the top with a chef's torch or place in pre-heated broiler for 3-4 minutes until top is golden brown.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
1/2 cup pine nuts
Monday, August 10, 2009
2 packages crescent rolls (just bear with me on this)
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Finally, after being home a week, I've got a few minutes to start sharing a little about our amazing trip to Ecuador! I know we didn't go for the food, but as many of you will realize, it is always part of whatever I do and wherever I get to travel- I'm sure most of you would say the same!!
Saturday, July 11, 2009
We also visited the Mitad Del Mundo (middle of the earth) today. Among the beautiful views and monuments were great little shops and lots of good restaurants. It was interesting trying to figure out where to feed the 29 of us, but we decided on Calima- a really cute place with authentic Ecuadorian food. I decided to try the chicken soup which was wonderful while Mary had corn on the cob, fresh mozarella and beans that are something like a cross between lima and fava beans. It was good as well as interesting, but she was very happy with her dessert of vanilla ice cream. We also tried an empanada that would be worth going back for more!
After we arrived back "home" at the hostel, we decided to go around the corner to the bakery for some goodies. I ended up buying some cookies as well as a couple of sweet rolls. The amazing thing about the food is how fresh it all is!
I will post some photos as soon as I can. We´ve got some great ones of dinner tonight that be sure to make your mouth water- or you´re just not hungry!! For now, buenos noches as I am going to go enjoy my sweets!
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Tomorrow morning- bright and early- my youngest daughter and I will be boarding a plane heading to Quito, Ecuador. This will be Mary's first trip out of the country, let alone on a plane. We are heading- with 25 other folks- to Macas, Ecuador to work at Emmanuel Christian School doing an ESL/VBS for two weeks as well as painting the school. I will also get the opportunity to teach a cooking class for 60 women along with one of the gals from our group.
Sunday, July 5, 2009
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard (I like Beaver brand)
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
6 cups thinly sliced bok choi (about 1 pound, trimmed)
1 small head red cabbage, thinly sliced
2 medium carrots, shredded
3 scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
Whisk vinegar, sesame oil, fish sauce. sugar, mustard, salt and pepper in a large bowl until sugar dissolves. Add bok choi, cabbage, carrots and scallions; toss to coat with dressing. Chill until ready to serve.
Also good as condiment for hot dogs and sausages.
I really enjoy celebrating Independence Day! I have a feeling it comes from having a family who always made sure that the 4th of July was a day of family, food and, of course, fireworks. I will never forget the taste of my family's fried chicken, potato salad, three-bean salad, and getting to help turn the crank on the White Mountain Ice Cream Maker. It would be worth all the hard work to be the one fortunate enough to be the first to get a taste of Grandpa Aziz's homemade banana ice cream!
As my husband and I have raised our own family, I've taken the helm in the celebrating of our country's freedom. When the kids were younger, it was the pancake breakfast at the fire station and parade in Monmouth, Oregon followed by a potluck dinner at my parents' house. As they've gotten older, we've done a variety of things~ from the Civil War Reenactment at Willamette State Park to picnics with dear family friends at Mission Mill Museum. We've even gone to a Keizer Volcanoes baseball game one year to not only watch our local team, but to also watch a beautiful display of fireworks!
This year, for lunch, we decided to do another picnic at Mission Mill thanks to best friends Ron and Shelly. They brought chicken and fresh Oregon fruit. I was in charge of salad, but didn't have any lettuce or "typical" salad fare. What I did have were all kinds of veggies from our second CSA box, thanks to Gardenripe in Silverton. I had a huge bunch of bok choi along with some broccoli, red cabbage and fresh peas. I also had made a trip to EZ Orchards, our year-round local produce market, to supplement our veggie box with local Walla Walla Onions and a few other treats. I decided to experiment with a cole slaw made with the bok choi and red cabbage as well as a salad made with the broccoli, peas, onions and some bacon added for that smoky flavor and crunch. The highlight for me was a dessert of raspberries that Shelly's mom and dad had brought straight from their garden along with some delicious Umpqua french vanilla ice cream. It brought back memories of that homemade ice cream from my childhood 4th of July potlucks!
The celebrating continued that evening at my folks' house with more potluck goodness. I brought more of my salads since I had made a double batch of each, and my dad did a great job on what he called his "mixed grill" of chicken, polish sausage, hamburgers and Italian sausage. My oldest son, Josh, put together a sandwich that my mom and I both copied as it looked amazing~ Italian sausage, BBQ sauce, and some of my bok choi slaw all on a crusty roll. It tasted as good as it looked! We finished the meal with a trifle I had "thrown" together of lime zest cake, fresh Kotata and Obsidian blackberries, lemon yogurt, whipped cream and shredded mint.
I have often wondered what could top time with friends and family celebrating our country's independence with a potluck, and I found out this year~ the answer would be two potlucks celebrating the 4th of July!!