Archive for the ‘food’ category

More Recipes in 25 words or less…

April 28, 2008

Back by popular demand (from at least three people!)…

Here are Monday’s entrees entries for the 25 word or less recipes.  I will endeavour to publish these updates on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  We’ll see how many I can come up with! And I do hope I encourage you to come up with some of your own – it’s rather a fun exercise!

Oh… did I mention that I don’t get out much?! heh heh

Salads

Moroccan Chickpea: mix one can chickpeas; red bell pepper; carrot; one teaspoon each cumin, coriander; 1/4 teaspoon cayenne; two scallions; garlic; olive oil; lemon juice; salt.  Zippy.

Village Greek: cut tomatoes into wedges; salt heavily; let sit.  Add sliced English cucumber, three cloves garlic, chopped onion, cubed feta, kalamata olives, pepper, oil to taste.

Appetizers

Spicy Peanut Sauce: mix one cup chunky peanut butter, one tsp each cumin, hot paprika, and chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne, salt.  Add hot water to desired consistency.

Garlic Puffs: cut one sheet puff pastry into squares.  Brush on garlic-flavoured olive oil.  Sprinkle lots of parmesan over.  Bake 20 minutes at 400 F.

Entrees:

Lamb Shanks Youvetsi: place lamb shanks in ovenproof casserole.  Add two cups stock, one large can tomatoes, one teaspoon cinnamon, chopped onion, garlic. Cover.  Bake two hours. Hearty!

Pasta with Burnt Butter: Heat four tablespoons of butter per serving of pasta in heavy sauce pan until it foams then turns brown. Remove from heat.  Pour over pasta.

Desserts:

Lemon Squares: crush shortbread cookies.  Add eight tablespoons melted butter, 1/4 cup sugar, some salt.  Pack into pan and let sit 1/2 hour.  Cover with lemon curd.

Top 12 Recipes – 25 words or less! (and baklava to boot!)

April 24, 2008

Has time gotten away with you today? No idea what to make for dinner?

Here are 10 recipes, brought to you in 25 words (or less). They take hardly any longer to prepare than to read (or to text to yourself as a reminder of what to pick up on the way home).

Vegetarian? Carnivore? Lazy@$$? There’s something here for everyone – courtesy of The Lame Cook!!

Soups

1. Tortellini soup: Put stock in pot. Bring to boil. Throw in tortellini. Simmer six minutes. Turn off heat. Add frozen veg and let sit three minutes. Enjoy.

  • (click here for the full Lame Chef recipe)

2. Cock-a-leekie: slice and saute three leeks. Add three cups chicken stock and 1/4 cup barley. Simmer 45 minutes. Turn off heat and add frozen veg. Tasty.

3. Zingy Noodle Soup: Put stock from one pack ramen noodles in two cups water- remove foil first! Add soy and hot sauces, vinegar, noodles, beansprouts. Boil three minutes.

Appetizers/Vegetarian

4. Hummus: Blend one large can chickpeas, 1/4 cup each tahini (sesame paste) and lemon juice, one teaspoon cumin, one-half teaspoon smoked paprika, cayenne and salt.

5. Saganaki: slice kefalotiri (or romano) cheese 1/4 inch thick. Dredge with flour. Fry in lots of butter until golden. Serve with lemon wedges and bread. Opa!

6. Greek Surprise Salad: chop one red onion. Let sit in lime juice 1/2 hour. Cube watermelon. Add feta, kalamata olives, fresh herbs, salt, pepper. Pour onion/lime over.

7. Fennel Citrus Salad: slice one bulb fennel. Add one tin mandarin oranges with juice, one quarter cup white wine vinegar, salt, pepper. Dress with edible flowers.

8. Chicken a la grecque: Brown boneless chicken breasts. Add sauce grecque (one can cream of chicken soup, half can water, lemon juice, oregano, salt, pepper). Simmer half an hour. Yum.

9. Desperation Curry: Saute one pound ground meat with soy sauce, pepper, onion and garlic (powder will do), red wine vinegar and BBQ sauce. Serve with rice.

10. Perogies: Chop onion and bacon – saute ten minutes. Meanwhile, boil perogies in salted water until they float to top – drain. Saute perogies in bacon mixture. Mmmm.

Desserts

11. Boozy Trifle: cut stale cake or muffins into cubes. Put in bowl. Soak with booze of your choice. Mix in pudding or custard and fruit or jam.

12. Decadent Delight: got cookies and pudding packs? Crush cookies, layer with pudding in bowl. Mix in whipped cream or cool whip and freeze 20 minutes. Mmm.

AND… (drumroll please) THE LAME COOK’S DOZEN BONUS!

  • (photo of zest of 12 lemons plus one lime from Michael Dietsch’s Flickr page)

Baklava in 50 words or less!!

  • shred half pound phyllo into large pan. Mix in two cups nuts and half pound melted butter. Bake at 350 degrees 20 minutes. Let cool. Bring one and a half cups honey, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup orange juice, two cinnamon sticks to boil. Pour syrup over cooled pastry. Dee-lish!

Kali orexi! (bon appetit in Greek).

And, for more tips, 25 word recipes and laughs with the Lame Cook, bookmark this page: How Not To Be A Chef!

Have any ideas for 25 Word or Less Recipes? Drop me a line and I’ll post your ideas with a link to your blog!

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Foolproof Recipe No. 1: Tortellini Soup

April 24, 2008

Can’t cook anything without burning it?

Think again. Here’s a recipe so simple that anyone can manage it. And… it’s tasty. And… it disguises leftover meat! In fifteen minutes or less, to boot. And it’s even got a fancy eyetalian name, too!

Zuppa di Tortellini

1. Get some stock or broth.

This is actually homemade chicken stock. Don’t be impressed. It’s easy to make. I’ll post some tips in the next week if you can’t figure it out for yourself. In the meantime, it comes in cans or tetrapak boxes or little dry bouillon cubes for your convenience. About a litre (or quart) of stock will do for four or so people plus leftovers.

LAME COOK TIP: No stock? Try tomato juice or V-8 juice! No juice? Hey, I’m not a magician. Go get some bouillon cubes.

2. Extract the trusty tortellini stash from the freezer.

I always have some of this stuff kicking around and buy it by the kilo at Loblaws:

A couple of handfuls will do for a litre of stock.

3. Cut up whatever leftover meat you have as long as it goes with the broth.

Yesterday’s selection: the remains of one of those prepackaged mini ham roasts. MMMM. I actually prefer ham to chicken in this soup for some reason. A cup of so of diced meat should work.

4. Bring the stock to a boil…

Simmer all of the above for 5 minutes or so. When the tortellini are done they will float to the top. Turn off the heat.

5. I guess you’d better stick in some green stuff as well.

I know that not everyone wants to be the only North American with scurvy in the 21st century!! Since I don’t usually have any fresh veg about, I typically stick in some frozen peas (which I like because they are easy to fish out of the soup!)

If using frozen veg, just let them sit in the hot broth for a couple or three minutes.

6. Season to taste.
I like parmesan cheese grated on top of this. The Scotsman who lives with me, however, does not. Salt and pepper also go well with everything, I find!

7. Serve up with some homemade crackers which you have spent all day whipping up.
Oh, sorry – I forgot. This is the fancy Italian tortellini soup, not the boring old Britisher soup. So – serve with crusty bread, preferably italian style.

LAME COOK TIP: Don’t have tortellini? All the fixings for another tasty ethnic soup are available at your local smoke shop. Stop there on your way home and pick them up:

Green onions and sesame oil are a nice touch too, I find.

So there you have it – not one, but two foolproof recipes!

(And, by the way, if you don’t find them to be foolproof, don’t bother dropping me a line unless you want me to create a Hall of Shame page and post it there. I mean, there are limits!)

Coming Tomorrow: Presto Cooking part ii: Breakfast and Soup

Quick Cooking 101: an introduction to Presto

April 23, 2008

Lest you think that cooking in 30 minutes or less was an invention of the Food Network, I’m here to tell you otherwise. There is every indication that quick cookery started as early as …

…hmm. I’m not sure – no date on the cookbook I found, sadly neglected, in the book swap at work. I’d put it at early 1950s.

But I guess it really doesn’t need a date, because the information it contains is timeless, not to mention priceless.

I mean get a load of this:

Where on earth are these vegetables grown, anyway?! I’ve certainly never come across corn and carrots which are the same size. Some weird post-nuclear accident?

But really, I shouldn’t jest. Maybe if I actually consult this book, I will acquire some gourmet hausfrau tips. As I leave my halcyon takeout-swilling chip-eating youth further and further behind, I’m increasingly worried that I am not the best helpmeet I could be. And if I start working on them now, I should be Queen of the Homemakers by 2010 when I turn 40!

And besides, the women all looked so happy back then!


Um… well, most of the time they did. Unfortunately, there is no caption for this picture. And check out the bottle!

I mean, I’ve never had kids, so I don’t really know… but it strikes me that it’s not appropriate to heat a baby bottle to boiling point. Am I wrong?

And… is that a fist I see hiding under the dishcloth?

Ah – it all makes sense now. This must be the missing caption:


“That’ll teach you for making me play ‘airplane’ for the 57th time today, kid… “

Would you just shut up and eat, already?!?!?!? If Mommy misses seeing Victor and Nikki’s fifth wedding on the Young and the Restless you’re going to your room until you turn 18 and I kick your worthless @$$ onto the street…”

And now for a short break from our sponsor… the back of the Presto book!
I want to be a model for a Presto ad!

Look how fun it is to do housework!!!

Hmm… I might not be dressed quite the part, though…


Maybe they’d go for something like this instead?

Um… maybe not. Unless, of course, the product is called “Mommy’s Dirty Little Secrets”…

Sigh – I’m not really picking up this hausfrau thing too swiftly, am I?

But what about the recipes? Well, I’m tired now. Check back tomorrow, wouldja?

Or, actually, Friday. Tomorrow I’ll give you one of my secret recipes instead.

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Fret no more!

April 23, 2008

Been banging your head against the nearest wall because you can’t live up to the high standards of all those TV chefs?

Despairing of ever finding the can opener, let alone whipping up gourmet meals for 12 at a moment’s notice?

Well, I have one words for you: Relax.

That’s right… relax.

And forget about competing with the Food Network stars. Not all of us can be top gourmands. (Some of us don’t even want to be.) But that doesn’t mean we have to starve, right?

So, stop buying all of those overpriced gourmet and homemaker mags. All you need to know will be revealed right here, for free. I’ll be providing some tried and true tips as well and (very) quick dinner ideas. You can also save tons of money by reading my commentary on food trends and gadgets best avoided.

Oh, and of course – there will the odd recipe (and some of them will be very, very odd indeed – but suspend your disbelief). Most of my recipes take less than half an hour (and that includes the time spent finding the can opener).

And don’t stress. You simply can’t do it like the top chefs do. That’s why they’re on TV and you’re paying the cable company to watch them.
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Homepage? click here.