I always try to eat delicious food. Unfortunately I don't have that much money, so I have to cook a lot of it at home. But thats OK because I love cooking and I love eating at home with my wife. This is a website with my favorite recipes and a little bit of commentary.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Jeff B's Spicy Southwest Soup

Last night we had company over for pizza. I made up a pot of soup and a salad to go with. I got the recipe for the soup from Jeff B, the drummer in our band. I had to change some things from his recipe subject to availability but he says that substitutions are OK. For one thing, I added a chipotle pepper for spiciness and to add a little bit of smokey flavor.

Jeff B's Spicy Southwest Soup

1 pound chicken
1/2 onion, diced
1/2 red pepper, diced
3 cloves garlic, pressed
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
1 can whole peeled tomatoes, crushed up by hand
1 can diced green chilis
1 quart chicken broth
2 t basil
1 t cumin
2 t chili powder
1 chipotle pepper, diced up
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup rice

1) In your soup pot, brown the chicken in a little olive oil and set aside to cool.
2) Add onions, red pepper and garlic to the pot and saute until just beginning to soften.
3) Dice the chicken up.
4) Dump everything else into the pot except the rice.
5) Cover and simmer for 15 minutes until the vegies are softening but still have a little crispness to them.
6) Add the rice and simmer another 15 minutes until the rice is soft.

DO NOT overcook the soup. You want the vegies to have just a little crispness to them when you serve the soup. I sprinkled a little shredded cheddar cheese over the top.


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Schlotzky's Bread

I just love Schlotzky's sandwiches. The problem is that there really aren't any within 300 miles of me. I did some research and found a clone recipe for the bread on the internet. I changed it just a touch by adding a little olive oil. Delicious!

Schlotzsky's Deli Bread (clone)

1/2 cup lukewarm water
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 package yeast
3/4 cup lukewarm milk
1 T olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 cups bread flour (all-purpose will work)

Stir water, sugar and yeast together and set aside.

Dissolve baking soda in 1/2 tablespoon warm water in medium bowl. Add warm milk, salt and 1 cup flour; beat till smooth. Beat in yeast mixture and remaining flour and oil (batter will be thick and sticky, but not as thick as normal bread batter).

Oil a 9 inch cake pan and dust with cornmeal. Pour dough into pan, cover and let rise for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and bake for 20 minutes till golden. Cool 1 hour and cut in 4ths.


Deep Dish with a little Semolina in the dough

I got the recipe for this off of pizzamaking.com. It is a pretty typical deep dish recipe but the twist is that the dough is 20% semolina flour. It is super tasty.

Deep Dish with a little Semolina

240 G all purpose flour
60 G semolina flour
155 G water
1/2 package yeast
20 g olive oil
61 g corn oil
3 g butter
5 g sugar
2 g salt

The best thing I've eaten all year

From the winter 2009 issue of Cooks Magazine

1, 3 ½ -4 pound boneless pork butt roast trimmed and cut into large chunks

Salt and Pepper

¼ cup vegetable oil

1 large leek, white and light green parts only, halved lengthwise and cleaned, sliced ¼ inch thick and rinsed well

3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed (about 1 T)

3 T all purpose flour

1 cup brandy

3 cups chicken broth

2 bay leaves

1 large fennel bulb, stalks trimmed, cored and cut into ½ inch thick strips
* To core slice in half lengthwise and cut out the hard core at the end of the bulb.

6 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup pitted prunes, halved

2 T minced fresh parsley

1 T juice from a lemon

Heat oven to 325 degrees with the rack in the lower-middle position. Pat pork dry and season with salt and pepper. Heat 2 T oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat and sear pork, cooking until pork is browned on all sides (5-7 minutes.) You may need to do this in 2 batches. Remove pork from pan and set aside. Add remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan and return heat to medium until simmering. Add leek and 1 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until wilted and lightly browned. Add garlic and cook about 30 seconds more until fragrant. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, until golden. The next step is to add the brandy. BE EXTREMELY CAREFUL WHEN ADDING THE BRANDY. TURN OFF THE HEAT OR THE VAPORS WILL IGNITE AND A HUGE FIRE BALL WILL COME OUT OF YOUR POT. Slowly whisk in the brandy, scraping up all browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Gradually whisk in the broth until smooth and bring to a simmer.

Return the pork to the pan, add the bay leaves, cover and place in the oven for 1 hour. Stir in the fennel and carrots and continue to cook in the oven, covered, until the meat is just tender (about 45 minutes more.) Remove the bay leaves, add the cream and prunes and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve over buttered egg noodles.

Frehch Pork Stew


Saturday, March 07, 2009

Cast Iron Stuff

Someone recently asked me for advice on a cast iron skillet. Here is what I recommend:



Lodge Logic 12-Inch Pre-Seasoned Skillet