Sunday, July 11, 2010

END OF AN ERA

Good Sunday morning my bubbly buddies! How are you doing out there? I am good... just filling my lungs with some weekend morning air! I had a nice long sleep and am suffering from movie night hangover! I think I woke up sweating pepperoni and popcorn butter LOL! All the classic movies (Jurrasic Park, Beetlejuice, Titanic, City of Angels, and some other movies) combined with some steaming hot pizza and popcorn made for a very relaxed night! DS loves Jurrasic Park and DD loves Beetlejuice LOL! And once they went to bed it was "not-so-kid-friendly" movies like Final Destination, Friday the 13th, and the ORIGINAL Texas Chainsaw Massacre! Gotta love late night cult classic horror! LMAO!

Ok, now since one of the things I bring you each day is a new and/or improved recipe to try, I saw this article and thought that it would be a helpful bit of information for the "beginner" cook, or even us "more experienced" cooks who may just have a bad moment/day and need to rescue a meal so we don't waste money. Consider it your Kitchen "Food First Aid" Chart LOL!

10 Ways to Hide Cooking Goofs

By Joe Kita

You can hide everything from overcooked vegetables to stale rolls.

1. Overdone pasta: Put in ice water or run under cold water for a few minutes to stop the cooking process and contract the starch. Then reheat in tomato sauce—the acid will perk it up further.

2. Sticky noodles: Drain and cool immediately. Then return the pasta to a sauté pan, add at least one tablespoon of olive oil, and toss while reheating.

3. Overcharred steak: It's all about spin, says John DeShetler, professor and chef at the Culinary Institute of America. Rub it with a mix of ground pepper, chili powder, and garlic, then present as "blackened." Or slice it up as is and use in stir-fries, salads, or fajitas.

4. Oversalted soup: For clear soups, add some uncooked pasta or a raw, peeled potato to the pot. The starch will absorb much of the salt. Discard the pasta or potato after 15 to 20 minutes.

5. Dry fish: Brush with a butter-and-lemon mixture, then sprinkle with chopped cilantro, marjoram, or savory. The sauce will add moisture, and "cool" herbs like these, flavor.

6. Overcooked vegetables: Cool as quickly as possible, in ice water, just like with pasta, then reheat briefly in hot stock and squirt on some acid (lemon, lime, or even orange) before serving.

7. Stale rolls: Wet your fingers and flick some water on them, then microwave in a microwave-safe cooking bag for no more than five seconds, or wrap in foil and heat in a 250-degree oven for ten minutes.

8. Limp greens: Bathe them briefly in a bowl of very cold water (no ice, which will bruise the leaves), then wrap in a damp towel and refrigerate.

9. Overripe fruit: When it's too far gone for even fruit salad, use for smoothies, purees, sorbets, or ice cream.

10. Burned bread: Scrape off the worst, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, and present as crostini; or use for croutons.

Now for the final day of the 60's theme, I decided to show you another craft that research deemed very popular during the 60's... mosaic art. Now, for those who don't know what Mosaic Art is, well let me tell you. Mosaic is the art of creating images with an assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, stone, or other materials. It may be a technique of decorative art, an aspect of interior decoration, or of cultural and spiritual significance as in a cathedral. Small pieces, normally roughly cubic, of stone or glass of different colors, known as tesserae, (diminutive tessellae), are used to create a pattern or picture. How do I do mosaic art is probably your next question, right? Well, that's why I am here!



Craft Idea of the Day: Basic Mosaic Art

Materials:

Eye protection
Disposable face masks
Broken class, stone or other objects that you can make your Mosaic tiles out of
Glass and / or stone cutting tools
Glue (depending on what you are using for your Mosaic tiles. Weldbond works good)
Tile Grout

Directions:

Step 1: Come up with a design concept and simply draw it out with pencil.

Step 2: Decide the size of tiles that you will be using to achieve the level of details that you want.

Step 3: Glue your tiles onto your design surface one at a time. Make sure to leave at least a minimum 1/8 to 1/4 inch gap between tiles to fill in with the grout later.

Step 4: Make sure to allow the glue to set the full recommended time before attempting to start grouting the gaps (the recommended cure time should be posted on the glue products packaging).

Step 5: After the glue has fully cured or set, it is time to start grouting. Start by mixing your grout according to manufacture instructions. Always wear a face mask to avoid breathing the grout dust. Slowly spread the grout into the cracks. Using a sponge make sure to remove any and all excess grout. Rinse out your sponge often to avoid clumps dragging across the surface. Don't overdue whipping down the cracks or you will start to remove the grout between the tiles. Keep the surface damp at all time so the grout does not cure to fast as it will crack.

Well, it's Sunday... the final day of the Groovy 60's theme. Home cooking, casseroles, cheap eats, and even vegetarian curiousities all being the craze of the times. I've brought you chicken and beef this week in some great recipes. I figured I would end the week with some great pork. Its a casserole dish and its simple, tasty, and relatively frugal! You can experiement with different spices to fit your familiy's taste preference... like it spicy? Add a pinch of cayenne or thai chili powder. Want it with more Asian flavor? Stir fry seasoning helps punch things up. Or maybe you want more of an Indian influence... add some curry or some tumeric. I love versatile recipes! Eat & Enjoy!

PORK CHOP SUEY CASSEROLE

1 lb. cubed pork, browned
1 lg. onion, chopped
1 c. celery, diced
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cans water
1 tbsp. soy sauce or tamari
1 c. raw rice
2 tbsp. butter, cut into pieces

Directions:

Mix all ingredients. Place in 2 quarts or larger casserole. Dot with butter. Cook uncovered in a 350 degree oven for 1 1/2 hours. Be sure to stir casserole 2 or 3 times while baking.

Well I hope that you have had a blast to the past this week. Sparking some great memories for you and bringing you some fun facts and food has been very fulfilling to me. And I hope you have had fun as well. Tomorrow will bring you more fun and fantastic adventures to help ease you through the wretched summer heat! But as for today I am gonna get off here and maybe cook or craft or something... not sure yet LOL. I will see you again tomorrow! Peace, Love, and 60's HUGS!

1 comment:

  1. Debbie "MOM"July 11, 2010 at 12:39 PM

    Good afternoon. Blog was good today. Love the article on fixing food mistakes. I have used many of them over the years, and they do work well most of the time. But sometimes there is nothing that can save the dish and you have to throw it out and start over. Thats when you put your plan "B" into action and cook a standby by meal either out of the freezer or the pantry. But a smart cook will always have that plan "B".
    I love the way mosaics look! I have always wanted to learn how to do those beautiful pieces of art. I have seen it done on some crafts shows but it seems kind of difficult and very time consuming. Maybe one day I will get up the nerve to try it.
    I am digging the picture of the recipe of the day that you posted but I dont think it matches your recipe. The picture shows a lot of veggies in it, but the recipe doesn't call for any of them. Can you check again and see if maybe you got the recipe switched with another because I sure would like to make whatever that picture is called. It looks scrumdeliumptous. You can email me the right recipe if it ends up being a different one. Thanks for a week of groovy memories of my younger years. It was a hoot!!!
    Til next time.....

    ReplyDelete