Blog-POT - A Refuge for the Cooking Challenged
Central New York is noted for its apple crop and its many orchards. The annual Fall Apple Festival in Lafayette - just south of Syracuse - is attended by so many people that the road becomes one huge parking lot! Good weather or bad - Lafayette 'built it' - and they do come - in droves!!
So it's natural that apples figure large in many of our regional recipes - which is why I've placed my watercolor of apples at the top of the page! The recipes below don't necessarily feature apples but they do reflect my philosophy of cooking - which is as follows:
A recipe that is to my satisfaction - must fulfill three requirements. It must be easy, delicious - and cheap. While I haven't always stuck to that 3rd requirement - I have held fast to the first two. The first recipe here is an old family favorite that I've been making for years. Our sons don't eat it - they inhale it:
- 1 can chopped clams
- 8 oz. cream cheese - low fat can be used*
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder - or 'to taste'
- a dollop of mayonnaise**
*Persons using no-fat cream cheese will be stripped of their utensils and drummed out of the kitchen. I used it once accidentally and it was vile.
** For those ignorant of the fine points of dollop - it is roughly a heaping serving spoon of mayo. Anyone using Miracle Whip will also be stripped of their utensils. You've got to have some standards....
1 can sardines in oil
finely chopped mild onion
garlic powder to taste
Mash it all together to a paste consistency & refrigerate. Serve with crackers.
In large oven proof pot with snug cover, place:
Beef - whatever is on sale - most recently I used - top round steak 1/2 price (Trim fat off)
Lo - sodium chicken (yup - chicken) broth - 2-3 cans (can substitute water & low-sodium chicken bouillon cubes) I used Herb-Ox - which is nicely flavored + water .
garlic powder to taste
1 - 2 Tablespoons lo-sodium soy sauce
You can throw in a cut up onion if you want to. Put in 350' oven for 4 or more hours. (You can also put it in at 300' for 5-6 hours). You can cook it on the top of the stove if you want to - but you don't have to worry about it boiling dry with this method. During the 4+ hours, you can clean your house or drink - your choice. Half an hour or so before dinner time - you can toss in carrots - those pre-peeled carrots if you want to. Or not.
Comfort Food for a Hot Summer
(utilizing our abundance of apples)
- 1 can (water Pack) tuna (preferably Albacore) - drained & rinsed
- 2 apples - peeled or unpeeled
- 2 slices mild onion - chopped
Combine all and add real mayonnaise - to taste. Serve on a lettuce leaf for lunch, accompanied by rolls.
- real mayonnaise - enough to moisten
Pork Chops in a Pot
This is adapted from a recipe I found in a community cookbook. Very easy and quite delicious. As you can no doubt see - I rely heavily on the magic of Herb-Ox bouillon powder (I use low sodium) and soy sauce (also lower sodium).
For 2 people - for 4 people use 4 chops - but not necessary to double other ingredients:
2 large boneless pork shops
2 TBL butter
2 cups water
1 TBL. lower sodium soy sauce
small onion - sliced
1/4 C. dry white wine (may be omitted)
1/4 c. water & 1/4 cup flour to thicken gravy
In pan with snug lid, brown chops on both sides with butter and onions (medium high heat). Add water, soy sauce & bouillon. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour. Remove chops to warm platter. Add wine to liquid in pan. Put flour & water in small container with tight lid. Shake and gradually add to liquid in pan till gravy is of desired consistency, scraping bottom as you do. Simmer uncovered for about 5 minutes. Serve with potatos or rice.******************************
Oven Fried Boneless Chicken Breasts
1/2 cup whole-grain breadcrumbs (I used regular store bought - and used more than 1/2 cup)
2 tbsp grated Parmesan (I omitted)
2 tsp grated lemon zest (No lemon? Leave it out)
1/2 tsp paprika (not necessary)
1/4 tsp salt (I always omit)
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice (I used bottled lemon juice)
Vegetable-oil cooking spray (I buttered the pan)
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 5 oz each) - I used 3 big ones)
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil (I used about 2 TBL)
Recipes Without.... Pecan Pie Without Corn
1 cup brown sugar 1/2 cup granulated sugar 1 Tablespoon flour 2 eggs 2 Tablespoons milk 1 tsp. vanilla 1/2 cup melted butter (margarine can be used) Lasagna Without Lasagna Noodles 1 16 oz. pkg. egg noodles (wider ones preferred) 3 TBL. olive oil - DIVIDED 1 1/2 lb. ground beef 2 cloves garlic - minced - or equivalent in garlic powder 1 26 oz. jar spaghetti sauce 1 tsp. basil 1 lb. low fat or regular ricotta 1 cup low fat or regular sour cream 1/4 c. (skim) mozzarella cheese - shredded 1/2 cup plus 1 TBL. grated parmesan cheese 1/4 cup chopped parsley (optional) 1 egg - beaten combine remaining ingredients with beaten egg