Mashed Cauliflower w/ Truffle Oil and Parmesan

1 cauliflower, cut into small florets
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground black pepper
2 TBSP butter
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 tsp truffle oil (or a little more for taste)
1 TBSP chopped Italian parsley
1 tsp olive oil

Some relatives visited recently and as a gift brought several olive oils, one being a truffle oil. I looked it up and seems one dish it is great with is a mashed cauliflower.

Put the cauliflower in a food processor and process into rice. Please in a double boiler and steam until just soft. Return to the food processor, add all the remaining ingredients and process into a mash (like potatoes). Add to a pot with a little olive oil and warm up then serve.

You can always add more butter or even cream.

It is wonderful.

 

 

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Scallop Chowder

This recipe is a blend of two recipes I found the internet. There is this store called Aldi’s that sells large frozen scallops for cheap. This is a very tasty dish.


1 TBSP olive oil
2 strips bacon cut into lardons, I use smoked Applewood in think individual slices at the deli
1 small chopped onion
½ chopped red bell pepper
1 celery stalk, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic from garlic press
½ cup dry white wine (Chardonnay)
1 – 8 oz. bottle clam juice
½ cup chicken stock
1 – 8 oz. container of heavy whipping cream
Gemstone potatoes cut into small squares with skin left on
Cayenne – dash for taste
S&P
Tarragon – dash for taste
Dried parsley

Fry bacon lardons in olive oil, sauté onions in bacon oil, add red bell pepper and celery and sauté, then 1/2 cup wine and reduce wine.

Add remaining liquids, clam juice, chicken stock and cream, add Gemstone potatoes chopped with skin on and garlic. Let reduce on medium heat until the potatoes start to get soft. With a potato masher, mash around the pot just a few times to thicken the chowder with potatoes.

Add cayenne, S&P, a touch of tarragon and cook and reduce until potatoes are soft.

Add scallops and scallop juice and cook 15 minutes.

Garnish with dried parsley.

Serve

 

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Stock
3 chicken thighs
1 carrot (chopped)
1 celery stalk (chopped)
½ onion (chopped)
1 TBSP peppercorns
1 small bay leaf
3 cups water

This is a classic chicken stock. I use this recipe in all my dishes needing a good chicken stock. In fact this also works well for veal stock and turkey stock substituting the meats. Place all in a soup pot and bring to a boil. Simmer 10-15 minutes or until you think the chicken has just cooked. Remove chicken and cool. Strain the chicken stock and discard the vegies. Save the stock in a two cup measuring cup so you can pour it later a bit at a time into the sauce. Once the chicken has cooled, deskin, debone and shred the chicken meat and set a side.

Pie Filing
1 carrot (cubed)
1 stalk celery (cubed)
½ small onion (chopped)
2 green onions (chopped)
1 clove garlic (cut into coins)
½ cup or more frozen peas
1 small bay leaf
4 TBSP butter
4 TBSP flour
Deskin, debone, shredded chicken
Salt and pepper
White wine
1 cup or more as needed Chicken stock
Cream (you have to feel how much you want for color and consistency) Maybe two TBSP.

In a large fry pan, melt butter, and on a little higher than medium heat sauté onions, carrots, celery, garlic until onions become transparent, add flour and stir until the veggies are coated. Move the heat to medium heat and add white wine and stir to begin making a paste. Add chicken stock a little at a time and stir each time, making thick gravy and then add cream until you get the right consistency looking for color and consistency. Add the meat, bay leaf and peas and stir. Gauge how thick you want the filing sauce. Once you get the right mix (it has to look good and taste good), reduce heat to simmer and let simmer about 15 to 20 minutes covered. Watch it not letting it over cook or burn. If you need to add more fluid you can. Remember the final cooking will occur in the oven. Then turn off heat and cover. It can cool down while you make the pie crust.

Pie Crust (Martha Stewart, Heavy Equipment Food Processor)
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 2/3 TBSP ice water
8 TBSP cold butter

Add the butter then the flour and salt and sugar to a food processor and pulsate about 10 times until the flour becomes course. Then turn on the food processor full speed and add the cold water a TBSP at a time until right before the flour turns into a ball. It should be thick crumbles. If you let it turn into a ball it will become too hard. Turn off. Remove the blade being careful not to cut your fingers. Then pull out all the flour crumbles and mash into a ball on a piece of plastic wrap. Complete wrap the dough and refrigerate 1 hour. Flour a board, rolling pin and the dough and roll out wider than your pie dish. There are many ways to do this. I like this method in the youtube link below. Using wax paper b/c the biggest issue is getting the pie crust from the rolling board to the pie plate without tearing it in half as you move it. Pie crust is not bound together like bread dough.

Making the Pie
Take a Pyrex pie plate, add a little oil to the bottom, pour in the filling and then cover with the pie crust. The rest is your design.

Preheat oven 425⁰, bake 40 minutes or until the pie crust is golden. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

 

Jamaican Jerk Sauce for BBQ Chicken and Ribs

This is one of our favorite sauces for chicken and country style pork ribs for the summer.

In a blender combine all these ingredients and blend.  Refrigerate overnight.  Add to the meat while cooking 15 minutes before serving.

• 1 tsp – Allspice
• 4 TBSP – BBQ Sauce (Sweet Baby Rays) or Catsup
• 4 TBSP – Brown Sugar
• ¼ tsp. – Cinnamon
• 5 cloves or 1.5 TBSP powder – Garlic
• 1 inch fresh – Ginger
• ½ cup or a bunch – Green Onions
• 1 fresh or ½ dried – Habanero Pepper
• 1 fresh squeezed – Lime Juice
• 1 tsp – Nutmeg, Ground
• 1 tsp – Onion Powder
• ¼ cup – Oil (Peanut or Canola)
• 1 TBSP – Soy Sauce
• 1 tsp dry – Thyme, Ground

• Country Style Ribs, loin or baby back ribs, chicken

Spanish Rice

• 1 ½ cups long grain rice
• 1 TBSP butter
• 1 TBSP olive oil
• ½ onion chopped
• 2 Roma tomatoes chopped
• ½ shallot chopped
• 1 cup white wine
• 2 cups chicken broth
• Salt and pepper
• 1 tsp paprika
• ½ tsp cumin
• 6 fresh basil leaves chopper
• 1 can red kidney beans drained

Sauté rice, tomatoes, onions and shallots in butter and oil. Brown rice. Add wine and cook 15 minutes on high and stir. Add the rest of the chicken broth a bit at a time until you get the right ratio of water and rice. Add the rest of the ingredients and cover and boil gently, checking the rice for doneness.

Alternate cooking method: This is an alternate method used with garlic scapes freshly cut yesterday from my garlic. Scapes are the flowering part of garlic but must be removed for the garlic to grow bigger. They are a like a garlic flavor green onion. Put the ribs seasoned in a crockpot on a bed of a little olive oil, sliced onions and chopped garlic scapes and a 1/2 glass of white wine. In the last hour, cover with the jerk base and cook on low the caramelize the sugars in the sauce.Serving over roasted garlic and olive oil couscous.

 

 

 

Kale and Kielbasa w/baby Dutch Yellow Potatoes

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One of the many things we found real fast about living near Wisconsin and Iowa is there is no shortage of sausage and cheese. I also found no shortage of kale (one of my favorites) even during the winter. It has 133% of the daily values of Vitamin A and 134% of Vitamin C. Since I like a good soup or gravy, I put together this dish.

Meat
½ lb. sliced kielbasa (pork or turkey)

Mirepoix
1 onion – chopped
2 carrots – peeled and sliced ¼”

Vegetables
1 bunch kale – chopped
8 small baby Dutch yellow potatoes – rinsed with skin and chopped into bite-size squares
1 clove garlic – minced

Sauce
½ cup dry white wine
2 cups chicken stock
1 TBSP corn starch – mix first in two TBSP of cold water then add to the pot

Seasoning and Herbs, Oil
Salt and Pepper
3 TBSP olive oil
1 TBSP Dijon mustard
1 TBSP dry mustard
1 tsp. marjoram

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In a large 5 quart sauce pan add meat and one TBSP oil and brown. Remove the meat. Add the potatoes and a dash of sea salt and fry to a point where there is a little crisp on the skin. Make sure to fry the potatoes real good as the flavor adds a lot to the pot.  Remove the potatoes. Add a little more olive oil and sauté the onions and carrots. Add the wine and deglaze the pan. Return everything to the pot and add the kale and one cup of chicken stock. Cover and cook down the kale about 5 minutes. Add all the remaining ingredients, stir in the corn starch, herbs, mustard and seasonings and cook covered on warm for 30 minutes. Serve.