Monthly Archives: January 2008

Why do you have a glove on?

No glove no love! haha! Just kidding, but I couldn’t resist with the blog title I chose. ;-P

I was surfing through my usual blog roll trying to figure out what to make with the one pound of ground beef I had in the fridge already defrosted. I went over to Bake & Destroy and checked out The Joy of Cooking Humans for a recipe but didn’t find anything that really caught my eye or my zombie eye for that matter. I went over to Ley at Cilantro & Lime and saw she made a Meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes but it didn’t get my buds salivating. Then I heard a co-worker in the next cubicle say “Damn!”. I roll over in my chair and see what the crap is going on. He says his chili isn’t good re-heated. Then it hit me like a Mack Truck. I want to make chili! I have never attempted to make chili or anything close to it. I searched online for a recipe that I had the majority of things for and after about an hour of searching I found the Best Ever Chuck Wagon Recipe. I read it and realize I have everything to make the best chili that my big orange pot has EVER seen! Muwahahaha! LOL

I get home and start immediately on the chili, it said it needs to simmer for an hour. So I get started and realize I don’t have a green pepper. CRAP! It’s ok, I’ll throw in some corn. No biggie. CRAP! I don’t have a Habanero Chili! CRAP! It’s ok, I’ll throw in 2 chopped Jalapenos. I only have one can of kidney beans! CRAP CRAP CRAP! Wait a minute… that is a recipe for two pounds of beef. So I halfed the recipe and I added a little more corn so substitute for the extra beans I didn’t have. I begin to chop the onion and Jalapenos with a green medical-like glove. My husband says “Why do you have a glove on?” I said “I don’t want to burn my eye ball out of it’s socket”. I have, on occasions, chopped some Jalapenos for spicy corn or salsa, then later in that day or even WHILE I chop, I give my eye a little rub. Then… 3…2…1… F*CK!!! My eye burns and I want to rub it so I do with my JALAPENO infused hand. Yeah, it’s no fun. LOL So I let it simmer for about 35 minutes and it was insanely delicious. It isn’t as spicy and the husband and I would have liked it. But it was still really good. When he was putting the left overs away he added some red pepper flakes and he said that’s what it needed to be… the best chili the orange pot has ever seen! Muwahahahah!

We served it with a side of cornbread. It was fantastic. We give this chili a thumbs up, in a medical glove of course. 😉

Enjoy!
-M

INGREDIENTS
2 pounds ground beef (I used 1 1/4 pounds)
1 teaspoon butter
2 large white onions, chopped
2 green bell peppers, seeded and chopped (Substituted with about 2 cups of corn)
1 habanero pepper, chopped (Used 2 Jalapenos)
3 (15 ounce) cans kidney beans, drained (Used 1 15 oz. can)
3 (15 ounce) cans tomato sauce (Used about 2 15 oz. cans)
1 tablespoon chili powder (Used 2 T )
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt (Used 1 T )
1 drop super-hot hot pepper sauce (Used about 2 T )

DIRECTIONS
In a large pot, cook the ground beef over medium heat until evenly browned. Drain off grease, and set aside.
Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Saute the onions, green pepper and habanero pepper until onions are translucent. Remove from heat. Transfer the onion mixture to the pot with the ground beef, and set the heat to medium.
Add the kidney beans and tomato sauce to the beef mixture, and season with chili powder, salt, garlic salt and hot pepper sauce. Bring to a simmer, and adjust seasonings to taste if necessary. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

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Filed under beans, beef, chili, jalapeno, spicy, tomato, vegetable

Michelle – 0.5 | Pie – 0.5

This month for the daring bakers challenge Jen from The Canadian Baker chose a Lemon Meringue Pie. I was extremely excited about it because I love anything lemon but I was also a little intimidated after I heard about the problems a few fellow bakers were having but put I rolled up my sleeves and went to it. I tried to take all the advice from other Daring Bakers and had semi-success with it, hence the blog title. My meringue did not pull away from the edges, it browned in the oven beautifully after about 10 minutes and I didn’t get lemon scrambled eggs. 😛 I cut my slice set it on my plate to photograph it in all it’s firm wonder. I walk away and try to feed a bite to my anit-tart husband. He takes a bite and makes the face of a 2 year old when you try to feed them broccoli. I had a feeling he would give me that kind of face but I thought by some grace of God he would have different taste buds… unfortunately not, he is still a PB&J fiend. I sit next to him on the couch and watch him play his XBOX 360 and take a bite of all the hard work and what happens? I make the face like a two year old being fed broccoli. It was too tart! Even for me and I used to eat lemons with a sprinkle of salt on a hot Arizona afternoon! I am convinced I did something wrong. When I returned to my pie sitting on the counter, it was running. Not too much but you can tell it was starting to give. Sigh… So I guess the pie won, as did I.

Definetly try the recipe and see who wins the battle. 😉

Lemon Meringue Pie

Makes one 10-inch (25 cm) pie

For the Crust:

¾ cup (180 mL) cold butter; cut into ½-inch (1.2 cm) pieces
2 cups (475 mL) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (60 mL) granulated sugar
¼ tsp (1.2 mL) salt
⅓ cup (80 mL) ice water

For the Filling:

2 cups (475 mL) water
1 cup (240 mL) granulated sugar
½ cup (120 mL) cornstarch
5 egg yolks, beaten
¼ cup (60 mL) butter
¾ cup (180 mL) fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon zest
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract

For the Meringue:

5 egg whites, room temperature
½ tsp (2.5 mL) cream of tartar
¼ tsp (1.2 mL) salt
½ tsp (2.5 mL) vanilla extract
¾ cup (180 mL) granulated sugar

For the Crust: Make sure all ingredients are as cold as possible. Using a food processor or pastry cutter and a large bowl, combine the butter, flour, sugar and salt. Process or cut in until the mixture resembles coarse meal and begins to clump together. Sprinkle with water, let rest 30 seconds and then either process very briefly or cut in with about 15 strokes of the pastry cutter, just until the dough begins to stick together and come away from the sides of the bowl. Turn onto a lightly floured work surface and press together to form a disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for at least 20 minutes.

Allow the dough to warm slightly to room temperature if it is too hard to roll. On a lightly floured board (or countertop) roll the disk to a thickness of ⅛ inch (.3 cm). Cut a circle about 2 inches (5 cm) larger than the pie plate and transfer the pastry into the plate by folding it in half or by rolling it onto the rolling pin. Turn the pastry under, leaving an edge that hangs over the plate about ½ inch (1.2 cm). Flute decoratively. Chill for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line the crust with foil and fill with metal pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, until golden. Cool completely before filling.

For the Filling: Bring the water to a boil in a large, heavy saucepan. Remove from the heat and let rest 5 minutes. Whisk the sugar and cornstarch together. Add the mixture gradually to the hot water, whisking until completely incorporated.

Return to the heat and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture comes to a boil. The mixture will be very thick. Add about 1 cup (240 mL) of the hot mixture to the beaten egg yolks, whisking until smooth. Whisking vigorously, add the warmed yolks to the pot and continue cooking, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in butter until incorporated. Add the lemon juice, zest and vanilla, stirring until combined. Pour into the prepared crust. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming on the surface, and cool to room temperature.

For the Meringue: Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC). Using an electric mixer beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar, salt and vanilla extract until soft peaks form. Add the sugar gradually, beating until it forms stiff, glossy peaks. Pile onto the cooled pie, bringing the meringue all the way over to the edge of the crust to seal it completely. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden. Cool on a rack. Serve within 6 hours to avoid a soggy crust.

Daring Bakers Extra Challenge
Free-Style Lemon Tartlets

Prepare the recipe as above but complete the following steps:

To roll out tartlet dough, slice the dough into 6 pieces. On lightly floured surface, roll each circle of dough into a 5 inch disk. Stack the disks, separated by pieces of plastic wrap, on a plate, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

To bake the dough, position rack in oven to the centre of oven and preheat to 350ºF (180ºC). Place the disks of dough, evenly spaced, on a baking sheet and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown. Cool completely.

To finish tartlets, first place oven rack in the upper third of the oven and increase heat to 425ºF.

Divide the lemon filling equally among the disks, mounding it in the centre and leaving a 1-inch border all the way around.

Spoon the meringue decoratively over each tartlet, right to the edges, in dramatic swirling peaks. Return tartlets to oven and bake for about 5 minutes, until the meringue is golden brown.

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Filed under Daring Bakers, dessert, event, fruit, lemon, meringue, pie

I confess…

I consider myself a good cook. Not great, not awful but pretty good. There are some dishes I am fantastic at, such as corn bread, jalapeno corn or chilaquiles. Others I am awful at, like rice or albondigas. Albondigas is a Mexican meatball soup. Lots of ingredients, steps and about a million variations. My absolute arch enemy would have to be rice. I don’t know what it is but I just can’t get it right. It gets mushy, too dry, not enough spice or too much spice. I can never judge it correctly. My momma on the other hand can probably make rice in her sleep. It will have the perfect amount of spice, tomoato, corn or peas it needs and it will be fluffy and you will not feel a hard grain at all. It will just melt in your mouth. My grama can make rice with one hand tied behind her back, blind folded , and like my momma, it will be absolutely heaveanly. Now why wasn’t I blessed with this trait?

A couple of days ago I told my husband I wanted to master rice. He, God bless his stomach, said to go for it and he would tell me his honest opinion. Night #1 was upon us and I measured out every ingredient. The rice, water, garlic salt and chicken boullian. I timed it and checked it frequently, all 23 minutes of cooking time. We sat down and I eagerly watched as he squinted his eyes and took his first fork full. It seemed like he chewed for hours and he said it’s good! A few hard grains and a little too much spice. I took my notes and we ate our dinner. Night #2 comes, I read my notes, begin to cook and watch it like a hawk for the 22 minutes it took to cook. He tries it (without squinting) and says it’s really good. No hard grains and the spice is a better than the previous night.

So here I am, on my thrid attempt. But remembering that Stephanie at Dispensing Happiness had chose Veggie Friendly for Blog Party #30. I thought a good rice would be fantastic for this. I decided to add some onion and a jalapeno to the rice as I browned it before adding the water. I thought it would be a fantastic taste to the rice and something a little different than the rice for the past week. The husband loved it but said it was a tad too salty. I am thinking I used a bit too much garlic salt. I liked it and it wasn’t salty at all but I’m still sick so the taste buds are a little out of commision still. Still good nonetheless.

Jalapeno Rice topped with Cilantro.

*Recipe to come*

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Filed under blog party, event, jalapeno, rice

How are you feeling?

It seems the past month or so that has been the most repetative phrase I’ve heard. “How are you?” I tore the ligaments in my foot and just finished battling the flu from the outskirts of hell. I have to ask myself how I’m feeling, every now and then.

The second week of December I went to Hawaii for a week. I know, it’s a tough job but I guess I can do it. ;-] I was in Hawaii for the 2-35 INF Army Ball. It was loads of fun to be in Hawaii again with Brandizzle and Kerrilicious. I miss those girls so much sometimes. I don’t miss puking in a toilet at a country club at 2a.m. but I do miss them dearly. The day of the Ball the hubby helped me get the curlers out of my hair so we could get pictures professionally done. But he forgot his flask (gotta save money, the bar wasn’t cheap!). We return to get it and as I walk down the uneven, flagstone type walkway at steep grade I roll my ankle to the side and hear/feel a pop and tear in my foot. I assumed it wasn’t anything big just a little hurt from the initial mis-step. After a night of walking and sitting it swells 2 times it’s size and after a 5 hour wait in the emergency room I’m told it’s a sprain, nothing big. I get some Vicodin and crutches and off I go. At my follow up 4 days later, I’m told I tore the ligaments in the side of my foot. If they heal (unlikely) I won’t need surgery. It’s still a bit sore but I DO NOT want surgery, so I will just deal with it.

Now I am getting over one of the worst colds on record. Well, not really but it felt like it. Awful headaches, runny nose, high fever, coughing up major organs… I am just kicking the tail end of it off now. But I wanted to bake so I made sure to hold my breathe around these little babies so I don’t infect April tomorrow.

My friend April at work had a cruddy day. She needed a pick me up, so I promised to bake her some cookies. I did say they would be chocolate chocolate chip cookies, but I didn’t have chocolate chips so I used peanut butter. They are dang good if I say so myself.

Enjoy.

P.S Sorry if I post is a little loopy, I’m a bit hoped up on NyQuil. 😀

Tripe Chocolate Cookies

1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup dark brown sugar <– I used light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour <– I used all purpose
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch processed)
1/4 teaspoon salt, optional
1/3 cup coarsely chopped dark chocolate (2 ounces) <– I used Peanut Butter chips
1/3 cup coarsely chopped milk chocolate (2 ounces) <– I used Peanut Butter chips
2/3 cup chopped pecans, optional

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large bowl, mash together the butter and sugars with a fork until well combined. Add the oil and egg and beat until creamy. Mix in the vanilla.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, cocoa powder, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well. Stir in the dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and the pecans and mix well. Using a tablespoon, scoop the batter onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 12 minutes. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool.

The Perfect Midnight Snack 🙂

From Ellie Kreiger on The Food Network
Recipe Link

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Filed under chocolate, cookies, peanut butter