Cheers and Merry Christmas from my kitchen to yours – hope your holiday is filled with great friends, family and food. Peace!
Archive for December, 2008
I am not usually much of a baker, but this time of year, something brings it out in me and I must admit, the warmth of the oven and the smell of cookies baking is quite a comforting and familiar holiday aroma. This year I made oatmeal raisin, chocolate chip, potato chip, and cheese. I have one more cookie recipe yet to make, but that is one floating around in my head, and I haven’t started that one – if I get to it…I’l post it here. The oatmeal raisin recipe I use is the one under the lid of Quaker Oats; the chocolate chip I use the Tolhouse recipe, sans nuts – both tried and true recipies I didn’t want to fool around with. For the potato chip cookies:
2 stick butter (room temp)
1 cup sugar (set 1/2 cup aside)
1tsp of vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup of crushed potato chips (I used Lays)
Preheat oven to 350
mix together ingredients; form mixture into small balls and place on ungreased cookie sheet; dip the bottom of glass in remaining sugar and flatten each cookie – bake until golden brown (12-14 minutes)
For the cheese cookies
2 cups room temp butter
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp of red pepper (you can add more to taste)
The dough will be loose, but you can form into balls – place on ungreased cookie sheet and flatten (they don’t run or rise much so don’t worry too much about spacing) bake in 350 degree oven for 10-12 minutes.
Whatever kind of cookies you leave for Santa, make them fresh, its a good way to get into the holiday spirit.
These are great tacos. Trust me, even though green apples and chicken might not sound like your cup of tea…give it a try…if you don’t like it I’ll be surprised. I saw this recipe some years back in a since forgotten food magazine and I make it on occassion. I should make it more, but I, like we all do, get in a rut and forget about it. I’ll tell you my version which is pretty much what I can recall from the recipe:
Season both sides of boneless chicken breast with salt, pepper, nutmeg. Saute for about 7 minutes. Remove chicken from pan, cube and keep warm.
Cube a large green apple and about 1/2 a large onion (I prefer the yellow onion, but you can pick your favorite).
Add onion to pan (same one you cooked chicken in) along with 2 tablespoons of butter – saute for about 4 minutes.
Add green apple and saute for about 6 minutes.
Add chicken to mixture (I also added another dash of nutmeg at this step for good measure).
Warm all ingredients together. Serve in warmed tortillas with whatever you like on tacos. I would try them without salsa first as the flavors of the all the ingredients is pretty special…if you decide you want salsa after that go for it.
Its taco week at our house, apparently since I will soon be blogging about another taco I made this week – you know sometimes you just get on a roll and really anything you wrap in a tortilla is usually pretty darned tasty. In this case it was catfish. Its all pretty simple. I cut the catfish into bite-sized nuggets and soaked them in milk and seasoned with salt and pepper for about an hour. (Mimi will swear on buttermilk for this process, but I don’t keep that on hand so…if you have it, try it). Next, remove the catfish from the milk and coat with seasoned flour. You can season with whatever you like. Start with red pepper, paprika, salt, pepper and anything else that sounds good to you. Once you coat the fish – fry until crispy and serve in warmed tortillas with whatever you like on tacos. I used plain yogurt (in lieu of sour cream) tomatilla sauce and cheese, I also served orzo and black beans on the side. For that, boil orzo for 8 minutes, drain and serve with warmed black beans – top with plain yogurt (or sour cream) and your favorite salsa. Its an easy meal and if you drain the catfish nuggets, pretty healthy.
I went last night to a new place in Savannah. The Distillery is located in downtown Savannah in a building that used to be…you guessed it…a distillery. On recommendation from a few friends, I was told they had great beers and it is a nonsmoking establishment. SOLD. So, when a friend called me last night to meet for dinner, I thought well…if they have good beer, let’s see what the food is like. I walked into the Distillery and was immediately relaxed. The room is mostly a dark rich wood with pub tables all round. There are many televisions and tonight they were showing Laurel and Hardy episodes, which, if you have never seen Laurel and Hardy, are kinda strange, especially with no sound, but I digress. The bar is a long wooden bar with ornate wooden shelves for all the glasses and booze and whatnot. There are three tap stations housing mircobrews from all around including two from Savannah’s own micro brewery Moon River. I had heard that the Milk Stout was terrific, but they were out of it that night so I got an Allagash White…this is described as a Wheat with spices…no indication what the spices are, but its darn tasty. Perusing the menu I noticed an appetizer of pretzel nuggets served with a spicy ground mustard and an ale cheese sauce…sold. Our waitress informed us that everything is made fresh in the kitchen and the bread comes from a local organic bakery so I figured the pretzels would be good…they were indeed. For dinner I ordered the black bean burger. Freshly made black bean patty served with a corn salsa. It was very good, I didn’t finish it as it was sizeable and I gorged on the delicious pretzel nuggets. If you order this, keep the mustard from the pretzels – that’s all I would change about the sandwich. My sandwich was served alongside some stout fries – also good, but the sweet potato fries my friend had were better so I’d likely get those next time. I ordered a second beer, a Dogfish IPA (a recommendation from the waitress) it was also a very good. We hung around until 9:30 or so, enjoying the relaxed atmosphere and the smoke free environment. I will definitely go again and again! If you’re in the area check it out – 416 West Liberty Street (the corner of MLK and Liberty sort of tucked in behind the trolley station).