Monday, May 14, 2007


We love corn in this house, especially what's called "hog corn", that kinda hard yellow corn best left on the stalk until it's dried and fed to the hogs. Only, if you pick it now, it's tender and full of flavor. I strongly approve of yellow corn over white. That's just my own personal bias, tho. If you like white better, I won't hold it against you. Corn from Florida's showing up in the market now, and the cornfield across the road from us is about 3 feet tall. It's owned/managed by the father of one of #3's friends, and he has promised us a bushel in July when it's ready.

Here's my favorite corn recipe:
Roasted ears with chili-lime butter
Shuck enough corn for each person to have 2 ears. Remove the silks and husks, and the stalk at the end. I am not a proponent of roasting corn in the husks, just because it's alot more effort to prepare than wrapping it in foil, and the end result is the same. But if you want to do that, go ahead.

Rub the corn very, very lightly with a dab of olive oil, and wrap tightly in foil.
Roast over a medium grill (for gas) or just off the heat (for charcoal/wood) for 25 minutes, turning after 15 minutes.

In the meantime, make the butter:
1 stick softened butter
1 whole lime
1 teaspoon chili powder
Zest the lime and squeeze all the juice. Put it in the butter. Add the chili powder. (I use chili pepper sometimes, it has more heat) Mash everything together so the lime juice is well blended in and everything is all together.

Serve the ears and the butter, be generous buttering the corn with the chili-lime mix. It's good.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

A survey of sorts

Do this, either here in the comments or on your own blog, because I'm trying my hand at writing one of these survey things and food seems like a safe enough topic. The answers are my own.

1.Sweet or salty? Salty, preferably in the form of something fried. And potatoes. Salty fried potatoes. Yes indeed.

2.What's your favorite go-to food when you're hungy and there's nothing obviously wanting to be eaten? A can of tuna splashed with lemon juice and hot sauce (open the can first)and eaten on Triscuits. I always have canned tuna and triscuits.

3.Ribs- beef or pork? Beef, slow cooked over wood and basted with a sweet-smoky sauce. Lots of them, with grilled corn and baked beans.

4.It's your birthday, and someone has offered to cook your perfect meal. What do you choose? Snow crab legs with lemon juice and butter, roasted yellow corn with chili-lime butter, and grilled asparagus. Fresh cherry cobbler for dessert, with whipped cream. I like it because it's all finger food (not the cobbler), and it all takes a certain amount of effort to eat, inviting everyone to sit and take their time over the meal.

5. Cake or pie? Pie, fruit, cherry or peach.

6.Would you rather cook or clean up? Cook, but I kind of clean up as I go along, so there's not much to do after we're done eating.

7.Apron or towel? Apron unless they're all dirty (I am one of those cooks who slings things around and makes a mess), then I tuck a towel into my waistband. My favorite apron says "Life is too short to cook for you people."

8.Napkins- paper or cloth? Cloth- they make me feel civilized. That's important when you live in a house full of heathens.

9.Dishes- mix n match or all of a set? Set. Refer to previous answer.

10.If you could have a party, how many and who famous would you invite? No more than 15, and famous? Define famous. Someone famous as in a celebrity that everyone knows but no one likes? Or someone who's well known in their field? Give me a highly accomplished person who's a humanitarian and humble enough to laugh at themself. I'd do that. Albert Einstein, or maybe Ghandi. But not Rosie O Donnell and certainly not Tom Cruise. Maybe that Werner guy who does the Chrysler commercials- with the German accent and huge mustache. Candace Pert- for sure. Maybe Dr Phil but I don't know what his humility quotient is.

I just made this up, with no rhyme nor reason...

Friday, May 4, 2007

My Favorite Birthday Recipe

Yes indeed, it's the one I like the best and use it often on birthdays and sometimes on normal days. Here it is:


1. Get in the car and drive to the grocery store of your choice.
2. Once in the store, proceed to the freezer section, where cakes and pies are
3. Find a Mrs. Smith's Deep Dish Cherry Pie
4. Purchase the pie and take it home.
5. Bake according to the directions on the box.
6. allow to cool completely- about an hour, and stick some candles in it.
7. Light the candles, sing Happy Birthday, cut into pieces and eat.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

It's a License to Grill!

It's getting to be That Time Of Year...for...GRILLING!
Whether you have a little hibachi to use on the terrace of your apartment, or a stainless job the size of a Buick, you know the Thrill of the Grill!
As for me, I do it probably 4 nights a week this time of year. A gas grill helps with that because I don't have to plan an hour out to allow the charcoal to get right. My stuck-up older brother insists on cooking on wood, and I admit that a wood fire does some fine cooking.

This is a pork chop recipe my family enjoys, with a couple of side dishes that go well with it.

Chuletas with simple tomatoe relish and Beer Beans

8-12 thin sliced center cut pork chops
Salt and cracked pepper
Season the chops with S&P, lay them on a cookie sheet.

For the rub:
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 jalapeno pepper, minced very fine
1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh oregano or cilantro (or both, mixed)
Juice of 2 limes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon paprika (or chipotle powder, if you like some heat)
Mix everything together and cover the chops generously with it.
Grill over a HOT fire, 3 minutes per side. When done, cover with foil and let sit for a few minutes.

For the Relish
2 medium sized tomatoes, cored and diced small
2 tablespoons toasted cumin seeds, crushed (set 1 tablespoon aside for the beer beans)
1 small red onion, diced small
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon minced garlic
salt and cracked black pepper to taste
Mix everything together well and set aside until time to eat. It's really good after it's set for an hour or so.

Beer Beans
3 cans of navy beans, drained
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 large yellow onion, diced small
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 bottle of your favorite beer
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon toasted cumin, ground
4 dashes of tabasco sauce (or more if you like heat)
salt and pepper to taste
In a large saucepan, heat the oil and add the onion and garlic
Add the vinegar, beer and seasonings and bring to a simmer.
Add the drained navy beans and bring it up to a simmer over low heat. Stir often because it's prone to stick and scorch on the bottom.

For dessert- slice a fresh pineapple, brush it with butter and sprinkle with some nutmeg, then grill.

What's your favorite grill recipe?

Monday, April 30, 2007

Thai Food, Rootie Style

I like using these canned curry pastes for all sorts of things, but especially seafood and chicken. They are like a hot little party in a can, with all that good stuff like lemongrass and chilis and ginger and fish sauce, all the work done for you. Tonight, grilled chicken in massaman curry sauce (massaman curry paste is milder than red or green curry, just right for this white girl's palate).

1 small can curry paste
1 curry paste can full of water
2 lbs chicken breasts, cut into strips
Make a slurry of the water and paste and soak chicken strips in it. Then thread them on skewers and grill.
In the meantime, put the sauce in a pot and reduce it a bit, after adding a couple of spoonfuls of sugar and a few squirts of soy sauce. Use this to baste the chicken while it's on the grill. After it's cooked you can decorate it with toasted (unsweetened) coconut and serve with
peanut sauce, or get the ready made stuff

Serve with Bhan Pho (those rice noodles used in pad thai and such)that have been cooked in Tom Yum broth (you can get
Tom Yum boullion cubes at Asian markets or from ImportFoods and cabbage cut into chunks and served raw. Yum. y'all.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Beer beer beer beer...

I'm not a huge beer drinker, tho I will occasionally have (what my husband affectionately calls)Mexican Horse Piss, and the microbrewery where we used to live makes this amazing apricot brew that I loved. However, I do like to cook with it, making cheese dip and bread and other fine things.

What I want- is your favorite beer recipe.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Most Requested Meal at My House

is...spaghetti, a catch all word meaning tomato based sauce, long skinny pasta, and homemade focaccia. I've made pasta from scratch exactly twice, and believe firmly that, while it's tasty, it's not really worth the effort.

1 large can each of petite diced tomatoes and crushed tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
1 lb hamburger, browned and drained
1 large onion, peeled and cut in quarters (explanation later)
as many cloves of garlic as you can possibly stand (I use 6 or 7), minced
Fresh basil, parsley, oregano, rosemary, all chopped fine (alot, like, 1/4 cup of each except less of the rosemary)
salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes to taste
A good dollop of red wine (Cabernet, or merlot)
Mix it all together in a big pot and simmer for an hour or so. Then fish out the onion and throw it away. This gives you oniony flavor without having chunks of slimy stuff in your sauce. (Thanks to Bro. Scott for telling me that trick)

1 cup warm milk
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
Mix it all together and let it sit 10 minutes. Then stir in
2 cups of all purpose or bread flour
Mix this good then add 1 more cup of flour
If your lazy like me, you'll fix this in a stand mixer, and let it do the work of kneading. If you're a Back To The Earth type who believes handling food is like getting close to God (me, sometimes, if I've been into the merlot for the sauce), dump the dough onto a well floured countertop and pummel it like it's your neighbor's yappy-assed little dog. Do this for 10 minutes, until the dough is smooth and satiny. Then coat it lightly in olive oil and put it in a bowl, covered, in a warm spot for an hour to double in size.
Lightly oil a cookie sheet, or a jellyroll pan, if you have one. Pat the dough out so it covers the pan, then use your fingertips to dimple it all over. Sprinkle with kosher salt, cracked pepper, chopped rosemary, or anything else you think would be good. Maybe sundried tomatoes and basil leaves, or parmesan cheese. Then drizzle lightly with some more olive oil, and let rise for 20 minutes.
Bake in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes. Cut into squares or rip it apart like a barbarian, it's up to you.