Sunday, December 30, 2007

Chicken Stock

Chicken Stock
by: Tim Sousa





The basis of a good soup is usually a good stock. Once you know how to make a good stock, you can use it for an almost endless variety of soups. This is a recipe I use for chicken stock that's easy to make, and tastes delicious. I usually make extra, and freeze what I don't use.





1 Whole Chicken, about 3 pounds

8 cups water

2 carrots, cut into 2 inch pieces

2 stalks of celery, cut into 2 inch pieces

1 medium onion, cut into large chunks

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

2-3 sprigs of parsley

1-2 sprigs of sage

2 sprigs of rosemary

2 sprigs of thyme (please, no Simon and Garfunkel jokes)

2 tsp. salt

Cut the chicken up into pieces.

Put the chicken, and the rest of the ingredients into a large kettle, and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer for 3 hours.

Remove the chicken, and place in a bowl to cool.

Pour the stock through a colander lined with cheesecloth, and chill.

When the chicken has cooled enough to handle, remove the skin and the bones, and freeze or refrigerate the chicken for another use.

Skim the fat off of the stock, and refrigerate, freeze, or use immediately.

Yield: About 6 cups of stock, about 4 cups of chicken.

Don't feel constrained by the ingredients and amounts listed in this recipe. You can use other herbs for a different flavor. You could add ginger peels and lemongrass for an asian flavor. Just let your imagination run wild.

You don't need to use a whole chicken either. You can buy the bone-in chicken breasts, and remove the bones before cooking. Then just put the bones in a plastic bag, and put them into the freezer. Then when you're ready to make the stock, just take the bones out and use them in the stock.

Once you've learned to make this chicken stock, you can use it as a basis for many different soups... chicken noodle soup, cream of chicken soup, peanut butter soup... again, just let your imagination run wild with it, and enjoy!


About the author:
Tim Sousa is the webmaster of http://www.classy-cooking.com,an online recipe library featuring original recipes, as well as several recipes contributed by readers.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

A Recipe for Rye Bread

A Recipe for Rye Bread
by: Kit Heathcock


The more I make bread, the more I am convinced of the importance of the kitchen being in the best position in the house. When we designed and built our house, I was determined that the kitchen should have a view and be on the front of the house. Now that it’s six-fifteen of a summer morning and I’m up early, kneading bread, because we’ve run out again, I’m especially happy to be looking out over a sun-soaked landscape to the distant mountains. Every time you make bread you’re guaranteed a good ten minutes of contemplation as you knead it, the mechanical rhythmic activity frees the mind to wander or switch off…very therapeutic. Having a view thrown in as well is just an added bonus.

I haven’t always made bread. It is a comparatively recent development. Making jam was the first breakthrough into self-sufficiency, then came the day when our local supplier of rye bread, who made a loaf that (miracle of miracles), all the children would eat, decided to switch recipes and use caraway in it…instant rejection by the whole family.

We’d stopped the wheat bread to try and help my son’s allergies and found it helped most of us, so apart from the occasional indulgence of fluffy white bread, I wanted to stay off it. There was no alternative; I would have to take the leap into bread making. The main reason that I’d resisted was that it seemed to take so long. First the mixing and kneading, then the rising, then knocking down and forming loaves, a second rising and finally the baking. Who could keep track of all that in the chaotic life of a three-child family?

So eventually I take the plunge, turn to my friend Nigel (Slater, not namedropping but he and Nigella (Lawson) are ever-present in my kitchen, in book format of course) and find a foolproof recipe for a white loaf, simpler to start off with white I think. Well the first try produced a reasonable, if huge, loaf, though my son still remembers that it was a bit doughy in the middle. Second try, I got two pretty perfect loaves and I was on a roll.

Now to find a recipe for rye bread. It seems that 100% rye is usually made by the sour dough method and I couldn’t see my family going for that, so settle for a half and half rye/whole-wheat recipe… triumph. Ok, my son the food connoisseur complained it was a bit too sweet, so next time round I reduced the amount of honey, but this recipe has been our staple diet ever since, and I am now truly ensconced in my kitchen, looking at the view, every other day, while I endeavour to keep the supply level with the ever increasing demand.

Any way, finally to the recipe:

500g rye flour
450g whole-wheat flour plus more for kneading
50g plain flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 10g sachet of instant yeast
1 tablespoon honey
3 tablespoons oil
670 ml milk
125 ml water

Warm the milk to lukewarm. Mix the flours and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the middle and put in the yeast, then honey, then oil, pour on the warmed milk and water and mix. When it gets doughy turn out on to a well floured surface (it will be extremely sticky) and knead for 10 minutes. You will need to keep adding flour as you knead. It is better for it to be too sticky than too dry – you can always add more flour, but too dry will make a dry, hard loaf. After 10 minutes, put it back into the bowl with a plastic bag over it and leave in a warmish place for two hours or so. Then knock down, firmly pressing out the air, but not over kneading, then form into two or three loaves on a baking sheet, cover again and leave to rise for another hour. Then bake for 30 minutes at 190C until they sound hollow when you tap on the bottom of the loaf. Cool on a wire rack

So how do I keep track of the bread making, in between school runs, mealtimes and the rest? Well I don’t always. There are times when I optimistically start the bread off, leave it to rise and four hours later remember about it, knock it down, forget to switch on the oven so it has had an extra day or so in rising time by the time it gets cooked. It does seem to be very forgiving though – whatever you do to it, you do generally get bread out at the end, it may not always be the perfect loaf, but then variety is the spice of life after all. There was one time it hadn’t quite finished cooking by the time I had to do the school run, so I asked my husband to take it out in ten minutes….. By the time I got back we had a very useful weapon against intruders. We didn’t eat that one…I think it was ryvita for lunch…!

Good luck with yours.

Copyright 2005 Kit Heathcock

About the author:
Sometime flower photographer, keen observer of the resonances of life and fulltime mother. Born in the UK but now living on a farm in the southern hemisphere. Contributor to the creation and maintenance of http://www.aflowergallery.com one of the homes of chakra flower art.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Best Recipes: Ice Cream Cookie Pizza

Best Recipes: Ice Cream Cookie Pizza
by: Donna Monday



Gather everybody around for this really cool cold pizza. Each person will have lots of fun topping their ice cream pizza slices with lots of yummy goodies. Great for kids parties.

Cookie

¾ cup firmly packed brown sugar
½ cup butter or margarine, softened
1 egg
½ teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup uncooked quick-cooking oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt




Ice Cream

1 quart vanilla ice cream, slightly softened

Toppings

Fudge sauce, strawberry sauce, caramel sauce, sliced bananas, sliced strawberries, m&m candies, gummi candy, coarsely chopped chocolate sandwich cookies, chopped candy bars, candy sprinkles, nuts.

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine brown sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy. Reduce speed to low; add flour, oats, baking soda and salt. Beat until well mixed.

Spread dough evenly into ungreased 12-inch pizza pan. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely.

Spread ice cream evenly over cooled cookie. Freeze until firm (1 to 2 hours).
To serve, cut into wedges; top with desired topping.


About the author:
© Donna Monday
Love Cookies? All your favorites here
http://www.best-cookie-jar-recipes.com

Monday, November 19, 2007

Chicken Stock

Chicken Stock
by: Tim Sousa

The basis of a good soup is usually a good stock. Once you know how to make a good stock, you can use it for an almost endless variety of soups. This is a recipe I use for chicken stock that's easy to make, and tastes delicious. I usually make extra, and freeze what I don't use.





1 Whole Chicken, about 3 pounds

8 cups water

2 carrots, cut into 2 inch pieces

2 stalks of celery, cut into 2 inch pieces

1 medium onion, cut into large chunks

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

2-3 sprigs of parsley

1-2 sprigs of sage

2 sprigs of rosemary

2 sprigs of thyme (please, no Simon and Garfunkel jokes)

2 tsp. salt

Cut the chicken up into pieces.

Put the chicken, and the rest of the ingredients into a large kettle, and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer for 3 hours.

Remove the chicken, and place in a bowl to cool.

Pour the stock through a colander lined with cheesecloth, and chill.

When the chicken has cooled enough to handle, remove the skin and the bones, and freeze or refrigerate the chicken for another use.

Skim the fat off of the stock, and refrigerate, freeze, or use immediately.

Yield: About 6 cups of stock, about 4 cups of chicken.

Don't feel constrained by the ingredients and amounts listed in this recipe. You can use other herbs for a different flavor. You could add ginger peels and lemongrass for an asian flavor. Just let your imagination run wild.

You don't need to use a whole chicken either. You can buy the bone-in chicken breasts, and remove the bones before cooking. Then just put the bones in a plastic bag, and put them into the freezer. Then when you're ready to make the stock, just take the bones out and use them in the stock.

Once you've learned to make this chicken stock, you can use it as a basis for many different soups... chicken noodle soup, cream of chicken soup, peanut butter soup... again, just let your imagination run wild with it, and enjoy!


About the author:
Tim Sousa is the webmaster of http://www.classy-cooking.com,an online recipe library featuring original recipes, as well as several recipes contributed by readers.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

SPICY ROASTED VEGETABLE SOUP

SPICY ROASTED VEGETABLE SOUP

This is known as chilpachol in Mexico. Don't forget to add a squeeze of fresh lime juice to each bowl.




serving size
Makes 4 main-course servings.

Ingredients
Aromatic soup base
2 pounds large plum tomatoes (about 10)
2 medium onions (about 14 ounces), peeled, halved
1 1/2x3-inch strip from Mexican cinnamon stick or 1 1/2-inch piece regular cinnamon stick
6 whole black peppercorns
4 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
1 large jalapeño chili
2 5 1/2-inch corn tortillas, cut in half
2 teaspoons chopped canned chipotle chilies *
To finish soup
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/4 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
5 cups water
1 1 1/2-pound butternut squash, peeled, halved, seeded, cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch cubes
3/4 pound red-skinned potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch cubes
1 teaspoon (or more) salt
1 15- to 16-ounce can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), undrained
1/4 pound green beans, trimmed, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup corn kernels, cut from 1 large ear (step 3) or frozen
1/3 cup (packed) chopped fresh cilantro
Additional 5 1/2-inch corn tortillas
Lime wedges





preparation

Make soup base:

Preheat broiler. Line baking sheet with heavy-duty foil. Place tomatoes close together on prepared sheet. Broil close to heat source until blackened in spots, turning once with tongs, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer tomatoes to plate and cool. Place onion halves close together on same sheet. Broil until surfaces are charred, turning once with tongs, about 4 minutes per side. Set aside and cool.

Heat cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat 2 minutes. Using tongs, place cinnamon strip, peppercorns, garlic cloves, and jalapeño chili in hot skillet, preferably cast iron. Toast until fragrant and charred, turning and stirring occasionally, about 2 minutes for cinnamon and peppercorns and 8 minutes for garlic and jalapeño. Transfer all to plate. Place tortilla halves in same hot skillet. Toast until browned in spots and crisp, pressing often with spatula, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer tortillas to plate; cool, then break into very small pieces.

After the charred tomatoes have cooled, peel, halve crosswise, and spoon out the seeds. Cut away most of charred surface from broiled onions and then chop. Peel garlic cloves. Stem, quarter, seed and devein jalapeño chili. Place tomatoes, onions, garlic, jalapeño chili, and chipotle chilies in processor. Finely grind cinnamon, peppercorns, and toasted tortillas in spice mill or coffee grinder; add to processor. Blend soup base until smooth, about 5 minutes.

Finish soup:

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat 2 minutes. Add soup base from processor, oregano, and cumin. Cook (sear) until base thickens enough to leave path when spoon is drawn through, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Add 5 cups water, squash, potatoes, and 1 teaspoon salt; bring soup to boil. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and simmer until vegetables are almost tender, about 15 minutes. Add garbanzo beans with liquid, green beans, and corn. Cover; simmer until all vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes longer. Mix in cilantro; season with pepper and more salt, if desired.

Toast tortillas directly over gas flame or electric burner until browned in spots but still soft, about 40 seconds per side. Wrap in foil; keep warm.

Ladle soup into bowls. Serve with lime wedges and warm tortillas.
• Chipotle chilies canned in a spicy tomato sauce, sometimes called adobo, are sold at Latin American markets, specialty foods stores and some supermarkets.


Easy Cooking Recipe

Potjie – Cape Malay Casserole

Potjie – Cape Malay Casserole





Potjie is the South African camp oven – a heavy cast iron pot, but with legs.
Serves 4 to 6

2 x Onions – chopped
1 tblspn butter (approx)
1kg neck of lamb – cut into cubes
2 tblspns oil
4 rashers bacon - chopped
Lamb stock – enough to cover
White wine – good slurp
2 large carrots
4 large potatoes
2 large zucchinis
75gm dried apricots
12 button mushrooms
Salt, pepper to taste
100 ml cream
Cornflour/water (ratio of 1:1)

Place the chopped onion into a saucepan with a little water (not enough to cover), bring to the boil and cook until all the water has boiled away, stirring occasionally. Add butter and continue to cook and stir until the onions are browned.
In the camp oven, brown the meat in oil. Remove and drain.
Add the bacon to the camp oven and brown.
Add the cooked, browned onions. Stir to combine.
Return the lamb, along with a good slurp of white wine and enough lamb stock to just cover. Bring to the boil, the put on the lid and cook slowly over a gentle heat for 1 hour.

Add chopped vegetables and apricots and season to taste.
When the vegetables and meat are cooked, thicken the liquid with a mix of cornflour and water and add 100 ml of cream.

Serve with rice or mashed potatoes.
Hint: Keith has always prepared onions as detailed above, the same as his mother. If you don’t want to take the time to cook the onions as written, then simply brown them in a little oil until softened.
Quantities given for the vegetables are just a guide – you can use more or less, depending on your preference.

Tom Yam Kung

Tom Yam Kung
Sour and spicy prawn soup (Serve two or three)








15 prawns, shells and head removed

40 g. MAESRI TOM YAM PASTE (2 table spoon)

100 g. straw mushrooms, cut into halves

400 ml. water

Method:

1. Pour the water into a pot and place on medium heat. When the water comes to a boil, put in the prawns and the mushrooms.

2. When the water returns to boiling, add the MAESRI TOM YAM KUNG PASTE.

3. When the soup returns once again to boiling and the Tom Yam Paste has dispersed, dip out into a bowl, sprinkle with coriander leaves, and serve.



Easy Cooking Recipe

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Easy Cooking Recipe

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