Taquitos!

January 13, 2018

Okay, I’ll admit, I love the crappy taquitos you can get in the freezer section at the supermarket.  I mean, half the time, they’re just vehicle for sour cream or guacamole anyway right?  I can’t be the only one on this.  But it is also pretty rewarding to make them from scratch and serve them at a house dinner.  Or maybe that’s just me.  Anyway, I more or less improv-ed my way through this whole process, cobbling together things I’ve learned and/or intuited over the past [coughmumble] years.  Anyway, let’s get rollin’!

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Leftover Rice? Time for Rice Pudding!

January 5, 2018

Okay, so it’s not the prettiest looking thing ever. But it’s warm and creamy and oh so easy. Like, really really easy.

So, somehow, between my dinners and other residents cooking for themselves while I was off-duty, we ended up with three separate containers (large ones) of leftover rice.  And it’s been cold, so I’ve been wanting comfort food.  Hence – this pile of sweet goo.

But like… I mean, I can’t even really give you a recipe because it’s so simple.  I mean, I can try… but really, just throw things on to simmer and do what feels right.

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Roasted Tomato and Fennel Soup (and an update on Life)

December 27, 2017

Okay, so… it was never a secret that I’m not great at remembering quantities of things when I’m fiddling with a recipe =)  I prefer to just… trust my instincts, as it were.  Which of course, can be problematic.  I know plenty of people who are exact-followers-of-recipes.  And that’s fine! It’s just.. y’know, not how I cook.  Especially not now, because… (life update)

I now live in an amazing co-op where I’m the resident chef for 20ish people.  So that’s super great and it’s pretty much my dream job and dream life.  But that means I follow quantities on recipes even less than I did before… AND, since I’m not paying attention to numbers in the first place, giving said amounts in a recipe is… well, it’s certainly not impossible, but it’s a bit difficult for me. =)

So… I guess from here on out – we’re all going to have to trust our guts, as it were.  Start with a little of [whatever it is] and go from there. As one of my favorite chef instructors used to say, you can always add more – but taking it out is a whole lot harder.

So this is just… I mean, there’s probably a billion and one recipes for tomato soup out there, right? It’s such a classic comfort food.  Paired with a grilled cheese sandwich or simply warm bread for dipping – I mean, how can you go wrong? (more…)

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Creamy Potato and Braised Kale Soup

March 17, 2017

So today is St. Patrick’s Day, and between several events and promotions at work, I managed to find myself heartily sick of corned beef (I know, I was shocked too).  I still wanted, however, to have a sort of thematically appropriate dinner – well, and I felt like I hadn’t been fun and creative in a while.

I’d also been vaguely craving a good creamy potato soup since last weekend, when I had the potato soup at a local eatery and was rather disappointed to find it was literally chunks of potato in broth.  I mean, it was tasty, but just… not what I wanted, texturally.

I really like how this soup came out – the flavors are very rich, and there’s a lovely little zing from the kale, which was braised quickly in some red wine vinegar.  This can also be easily adapted to be vegetarian or vegan – just sub out the meaty/creamy things! (I’ll offer options in the ingredients)

Okay? Here we go! (more…)

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Coronation Chicken Salad – Vickie’s Variations

March 14, 2017

All right, so let’s talk about Coronation Chicken Salad. It was developed by a couple of Cordon Bleu VIPs, for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 (source: wikipedia)

Basically it’s a chicken salad with curry powder added.  But as with most protein salads (or pretty much anything you can find a recipe for) there’s plenty of variations and tweaks to be found on the great wide web. What I love about it is the little hint of sweetness that it gets from the dried fruit – classically sultanas which I think are larger, golden raisins, but you can use dark raisins, dried dates, dried currants, whatever you like. (more…)

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Red Beans Jambalaya (Vegetarian)

February 27, 2017

Mardi Gras is tomorrow, but since I have rehearsal tomorrow, I figured I would celebrate tonight.  I’ve been eating a bit too much nasty junk food lately, so I was kind of aiming for somewhere between red beans and rice, and jambalaya.  This is packed full of veggies, and can be completely vegan.  And it’s super filling.  So, I’ll count this as a win. (by the way, this recipe makes SIX portions, so plan/adjust accordingly if you hate leftovers.) (more…)

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Cardamom and Cocoa? Absolutely!

February 9, 2017

So, say you’ve just been outside shovelling after a snowstorm.  Amongst my friends, the proper reward for such toils is a nice hot mug of cocoa.  So when my roommates and I got back in from an epic shovelling attack tonight, I went straight for the cupboard.

Here’s the thing though – I’m pretty sure I am actually incapable of following the directions on those canisters of cocoa mix.  And I’m totally okay with that.

What I do is: (more…)

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My Standard Weekend Breakfast (Lately)

January 28, 2017

Hi, yes, I know, I’ve been in hiding for a bit.  Life, busy, etc etc.

Anyway.

So for the past – oh gosh, at least year or so, I’ve found that my weekend breakfast has remained pretty constant – and it’s a treat for me, both to make and consume.  So I figured I’d share.  But of course, since I’m generally puttering around making my breakfast before I’ve had coffee (and at this point it’s purely muscle memory) … I don’t measure anything.  …Oops.

But anyway, this is quick and easy, and I love it, so I’m going to share it. (more…)

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Slow Cooker “Tuscan Cream Soup” (ripped off from BIG CHAIN ITALIAN RESTAURANT)

November 28, 2015

This brings me back to shortly after college, when my best friend from high school and I were still living in our hometown, and we were rather at loose ends with ourselves (I eventually wised up and moved back East) – and we would often drown our sorrows at *Big Chain Restaurant* that always offered unlimited soup, salad, and breadsticks at weekday lunch (yeah, you know who I’m talking about).

There’s actually tons of recipes for this soup – it is a DAMN good soup, and actually quite easy to make – but I didn’t want to actually babysit a pot of soup, so I had to figure out a slow cooker version.  Everything is approximate, since I actually left the house while the soup was cooking away – but this is a little bit of nostalgia in a bowl.  And also saving me tons of money and time, because there’s actually not one of those restaurants near me, and I’m not really willing to drive for like half an hour (with no traffic) just to get this soup. (more…)

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Whoa, how long has THAT been there? All right, time to make a curry!

August 24, 2015

Do you ever go look in the back of your fridge, and have this moment of “whoa, I still have that?  I’ve got to use that up like, TODAY.”

That happened to me the other night, after I finally gave up on my lofty goal of making green smoothies every day for my health. (I need a better blender before that’s really a viable option.)

So I looked in the fridge, and I had just… GOBS AND GOBS of beautiful, lovely spinach and kale, just begging to be cooked. And I thought to myself “well, I can’t just let it go to waste!”  So I went to the store for a few sundries, and got to work. (more…)

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