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Below are the 9 most recent journal entries recorded in Cuisine for the non-cook in everyone!'s LiveJournal:

Monday, August 6th, 2007
3:50 pm
Today's lunch
Because it's much too hot to walk all the way to the grocery store, here's what I did with a few of the non-fresh foods around the house:

First, I looked at a box of macaroni spirals & cheese that was on sale recently to see how many cups of water were recommended. After getting a pot of water nice and bubbling on the stove, dumped in the spirals and cooked for some time approximating the time recommended on the box. Drained. Instead of adding the suggestions listed in the package directions, I dumped in:

the packet of pretty orange cheese sauce mix (naturally)

a small pile of dry nonfat milk

all the leftover drops of olive oil that could be convinced to come out of four bottles I'd been meaning to remove from the pantry eventually

one biiiig can of Italian-style diced tomatoes (oregano, basil & garlic flavored... mmm)

half a can of chicken

everything that was left of a bag of mostly-eaten frozen mustard greens

and then heated everything at a low level for a while so the greens would warm up a bit.

Because I've just remembered that there are some fresh mushrooms in the fridge, I'm going to slice up a few of those and add them in when it's time for leftovers. Also considered for inclusion: canned chickpeas and canned olives if I can find where either of those are hiding.
Tuesday, February 7th, 2006
8:19 pm
Easy Fried Rice
Faced with the eventual mountain of leftovers after a few well-cooked meals, fried rice is an excellent way to clean out the goodies still left in the fridge and not waste any money. Here's the recipe for the fried rice I made this evening; play with it at will, because fried rice is extremely forgiving to the novice cook.

Ingredients -
-Leftover plain white rice (Chinese take-out rice is excellent for this). About 3 to 4 cups. Make sure you've separated it and un-clumped it before you use it.
-Leftover chicken, ham, beef, fish, etc. Any will do. Cube it into small, 1/4" cubes. Use at least 1 and 1/2 cups; preferably more. I used chicken this evening, because I had roasted a whole chicken the night before and still had plenty to use (I'll post the recipe for really easy roasted chicken some other time).
- Oil. Use peanut oil whenever possible, but canola will do for the health-conscious among us. Don't use vegetable oil - it doesn't hold up quite that well under high temperatures.
- One (1) small to medium size onion, depending on how onion-y you like your rice, chopped into small strips. You don't have to be too exact on this, just so they won't stick out like a sore thumb when you're eating 'em. I like small, yellow onions. Or you can use a few shallots if you've got them.
- Two cloves of garlic, slivered thinly. Got that crushed stuff in oil in the fridge? Throw it away. Got garlic powder? Throw it away. There is never an excuse for not using real garlic.
- Ginger, slivered thinly. Use about the size of a small clove of garlic. Got powdered ginger? Ok, but just this time (I didn't have ginger either).
- Crushed red pepper.
- Mixed, frozen veggies. Use at least a cup.
- Two medium-sized eggs, beaten.
- Soy sauce.
- White pepper, if you have it. Any good old bit of favorite savory seasonings will do. I like Goya Adobo, myself.

Now to put the whole thing together:

- If you don't have a work just yet, go and buy one. And not one of those crap jobs that plug into the wall. I bought the wok set from Crate and Barrel and am quite happy with it, even if it is a pain in the ass in the whole easy clean-up department. If you can't do that right now and you really want some fried rice, then use a thick-bottomed skillet. The heavier the better.
- Heat your work at high heat (the hotter the better) until that baby is sizzling. This will help dry up any moisture on your cooking surface. This is really important because moisture + oil + high temperatures = 3rd degree burns. Do not put oil in until that wok is screamingly hot.
- Got your work screamingly hot? Ok, now back off the heat down to maybe high-medium-high. Like a 7 out of 10. You don't want your oil to instantly light. Very, very scary.
- Ok, now that your wok has cooled down a little bit, pour in a good measure of oil into the bottom of the wok. Remember, you can always put more oil in, but you can never take oil out. I like to have maybe a bit less than a 1/2" inch of oil at the bottom.
- Shake a generous amount of crushed red pepper into the oil. Stir around. Let that cook for a bit, then add the garlic. Stir, and keep giving it a wee bit of a stir until that garlic is golden brown. Remove garlic with your handy-dandy slotted spoon.
- Add the ginger. Let cook until golden brown. Remove.
- You've now got a good flavor base to start cooking. Good job!
- Toss in your onions, and stir, cooking until the onions are translucent.
- Take your meat, and toss it into the oil. Throw your favored seasonings and white pepper on top. Give it a good generous shake. Stir, and keep that meat moving, making sure it doesn't stick to the wok. Turn up the heat if you feel like things aren't cooking fast enough. The key to wok cookery is making sure you're not doing things slow and low, so make sure you've got enough firepower to cook things quickly, thereby locking in flavor.
- After the meat is nice and warm, and kind of fried a bit, take your rice and add in a cup at a time or so, making sure you coat it evenly before adding more rice. If you look down and notice that your rice isn't getting that nice, shiny fried-rice look, feel free to add a little bit of oil at a time after adding each cup of rice.
- After your rice is nice and coated in oil, add your frozen veggies. I like to thaw mine out a bit before tossing them in. Stir.
- Ok, now you've got something resembling fried rice. At this point, take your beaten egg and add IN STAGES, making sure to stir as you add. You don't want to end up with a fried-rice omelet. Make sure you've got that egg worked in there nicely.
- Take your bottle of soy sauce and commence shaking on some soy sauce, stirring it in until it starts to get that nice fried-rice color. Got a nice color going? Take a fork and taste. Add more if you feel it needs more salt. If you feel it's too salty, then tough shit. Better ruck next time!
- Stir and toss around until it dries up a bit, and then remove from the heat.
-Serve in a bowl and enjoy.

Here's a picture of the finished product. I'm so proud! :)

Image hosting by Photobucket

Current Mood: accomplished
Monday, February 6th, 2006
8:40 pm
Turkey Breast Diane
1 Pound TURKEY BREAST CUTLETS, pounded to an even thickness
2 Teaspoons lemon pepper seasonings
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 Teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped
Lemon wedges for garnish

1. Coat a large skillet with cooking spray and heat pan over medium heat for 30 seconds.
2. Sprinkle both sides of turkey cutlets with lemon pepper. Place turkey in hot skillet and saute for 3 to 5 minutes on each side until browned and no longer pink in the center.
3. Combine remaining ingredients in a small mixing bowl, mixing well. Add to pan and cook until heated through.
4. Garnish with lemon wedges and parsley.

WOAH. Sooooo easy, and it tastes incredible! I served it with yellow rice and salad.

Current Mood: satisfied
Thursday, February 2nd, 2006
10:41 am
Garlic Rice and Chili
This is a gem I discovered on accident the other night. I had leftover white rice from take-out chinese in the fridge, so I looked up a quick recipe for fried rice online. What I found was Filipino garlic rice, which they use as a common base for any and all meals.

3 cups white rice (cooked, but dried out/a few days old is best)
3 garlic cloves or 3 tsp minced garlic
Cooking oil
Campbells Roadhouse Chili or Stagg Chili

I used olive oil, but whatever you'd like. Pour in just enough oil to almost cover the bottom of the skillet, and then sautee the garlic for one minute. Add the rice, and occasionally stir for 5-10 minutes. At the same time, heat the chili. Once both are heated, simply place the rice in a bowl and cover with chili.

WONDERFULNESS. Buttered bread is a nice touch too. Along with a Stella.
Sunday, January 29th, 2006
7:04 pm
This books for you folks

I'm just visiting here. I'm (a) engaged and (b) fairly well known for elaborate meals among friends.
10:39 pm
Quick recipe for the cooking lame...
Make Mac & Cheese (from a box if you're really lazy and cheap)

Once it's done, add 1 can of tuna (drained)
1 can of peas (drained)
a dash of worchester sauce
It's good!
1:05 pm
I suppose I ought to provide an introductory post. I love the idea of this community, as it deals with a subject that has been very close to my heart for many years. Jamie Oliver first brought what he called "Naked Cooking" to the public eye, cooking great food with the minimum number of ingredients, and simple recipes. I'd been doing it for five or more years before I first heard his name, and frankly some of his stuff is far too complicated and extravagant.

I suppose the genesis of my love of simple cooking came from Keith Floyd, who excelled in drunkenness to such an extent as to make the Two Fat Ladies seem like Sunday School teachers. Floyd had such an easy way with "just slap a few things in a pan" cookery, and it was obvious he absolutely loved what he was doing. I learned from him to be above all else confident in the kitchen. I found my confidence by following a simple maxim: Cook unfamiliar things in single-serving amounts, and always have a brick of cheese, a can of spam and a loaf of bread on standby.

I have no idea what he's doing these days -- I haven't seen him on TV or in print for a very long time --but the spirit I picked up from his shows lives strong in me.

I look forward to helping and being helped by the rest of you. Enthusiasm, and the willingness to give it the old school try, go a bloody long way in some of the most fun and tasty food I have ever eaten.

One other word of advice: officialramen will instruct, inspire and entertain.
8:11 am
Velveeta Chili
This is one of the simplest and most wonderful meals I ever mixed up.

Buy a large Wendy's Chili.
Make a batch of Velveeta Shells and Cheese.

Mix a 50/50 ratio, and enjoy. If you're cooking this in a hot pot, you can just add the chili to the shells and cheese and eat directly from the hot pot.
8:07 am
Welcome to Bachelor Food!
This community is for us non-Chefs. If you've ever invented a meal by mixing random contents of your fridge or consider Ramen noodles to be a major food group, this community is for you!

So c'mon... let's help each other out by sharing all our recipies! ENJOY!!

Current Mood: hungry
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