My husband had a craving for waffles the other day. When he found out that I had to work yesterday until 5, he suggested that we have waffles for supper. Great! I could get a head start on the batter by prepping the dry ingredients and just add the wet when I got home. I had in my freezer All Natural & Full Cooked Breakfast with Sage Chicken Sausage from Wegmans, $4.50 for an 8 oz. package, to complete the meal.
Who doesn't like meatloaf? At this time of the year it's a comfort food. We've all had our mother's meatloaf, chopped meat seasoned with the usual spices. If mom was daring, perhaps she made it it with Lipton Soup Onion Soup mix. What about a meatloaf that eats like a one dish meal? Sounds interesting doesn't it.
Sunday afternoon I took myself over to Whole Foods and purchased a bone-in pork butt for my pulled pork. I first seasoned the pork with salt and pepper, then browned all sides in a cast iron frying pan before placing it in the slower cooker. Once I had that done, I merely poured in the Williams-Sonoma Apple Cider Pulled Pork Starter and let it cook for six hours. The recipe on the jar said to cook for four hours on high. However, I have another recipe which calls for cooking the meat for 7-8 hours. After the four hours on high, I reduced the crock pot temperature to low and let it go another two hours.
What a miserable day today is. The howling wind, the rainy blowing sideways and yet it's off to work I must go tonight. I like to get my dinner done ahead of time and my kitchen cleaned up. Ruffling through a file folder of recipes I came across chicken and broccoli stir fry. It's a recipe from Dorothy Davis in Bon Appetit Magazine, December 1995. The recipe is quick and one pan. It can easily be reheated for the husband.
I am getting addicted to my Wegmans and Whole Foods apps. I especially like my Wegmans app as I can create a shopping list and get a ballpark as to what my food bill is going to be. On my Whole Foods app, I get an overview of their weekly sale and coupons which are good Wednesday through Tuesday.
Right now Whole Foods has on special Bone-In Pork Butt "From pigs fed vegetarian feed and raised with no antibiotics, ever. Excludes cooked." for $2.99/lb. I recently purchased at Williams-Sonoma Apple Cider Pulled Pork Starter for $9.99 (originally $16.95). As I said before, W-S starter sauces are great. I used one at Christmas for beef short ribs and it was scrumptious. Although the recipe calls for 2-1/2 pound boneless pork shoulder, I'll try using the bone-in pork butt. In doing a bit of quick research on Chowhound, it seems it will work just fine.
I believe that I mentioned in earlier blogs, I received a cookbook, Lidia’s Italy by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and Tanya Bastianch Manuali, as a birthday gift last year. I selected the beef goulash recipe for dinner the other night. It was another recipe my husband wanted me to prepare.
Instead of purchasing beef for stewing at the meat counter, I chose Wegmans boneless chuck roast at $5.99/lb. and cubed it myself into 1-1/2" cubes for the recipe. Since I didn't realize I needed fresh rosemary, I substituted dry in its place using approximately 1 teaspoon. I always have tomato paste on hand. A little tip, I make 1 tablespoon size portions of the tomato paste, place on parchment paper and freeze on a pan. Once they're frozen, I place the frozen tomato paste mounds in a container for future use.
The other day before work, I took out my Lidia's Italy cook book to see what other recipes my husband had selected for making. One of those was chicken cacciatora with eggplant. It's a recipe that can be prepared in one pot, which I did, and the ingredient list was pantry basic, with a few additions. I already had some uncured, applewood smoked bacon in my freezer, I needed to purchase a can of San Marzano tomatoes, an eggplant and fresh parsley.
The other day my husband was making meals suggestions to me. After awhile one tends to get in a rut with meal preparation and you need someone to remind you of dish that has been taken off the cooking circuit. Turkey polpettone is one of those dishes. Back in 2002, I believe chef Michael Chiarello had a cooking show on one of the public broadcasting stations. He prepared this dish of turkey polpettone.
This past Sunday, a new season of America's Test Kitchen started. The show's topic dealt with the use of cast iron. The show suggested preheating both the oven and cast iron pan in a 500° oven. If you use cast iron to cook a steak, the result for rare was a nice exterior crust and meat that's juicy and pink inside. They also spratchcocked a whole chicken (removing the backbone and cracking the sternum to flatten the chicken before cooking), which enabled the chicken to cook in about 30 minutes, faster than roasting a whole chicken.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.