Here's to good food!

I am finally putting my tried and true family recipes here. Check out my old-time favorites as well as newly discovered ones.

I hope you'll find some recipes here that you enjoy cooking, and those you cook for will find them tasty and satisfying.
Are you looking for something special? Something quick and easy? You'll find it here somewhere.
Check in often to see what's cooking in Monterey!

One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating. ~Luciano Pavarotti

If you are posting from this site, please give appropriate credit and notify me. Thank you.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Singapore Crab (or Tofu)

Now that CRAB season is upon us, we can make this again.  Of course this dish tastes best with fresh crab, but when it's out of season, and you crave this flavor, try a block of tofu.  (A Sunset recipe)

1 freshly cooked Dungeness crab or 1 block of tofu
1 tablespoon chopped ginger
3 cloves garlic, chopped
Singapore Chile Sauce
1 tablespoon Black Bean Garlic Sauce*
1 fresh jalapeno chile, minced (wearing kitchen gloves)
3/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup catsup
1 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
Fresh cilantro, (optional garnish)

Wearing kitchen gloves, cut stems and seeds from chile; mince.  In a small bowl, smoothly blend cornstarch with chicken broth and catsup.  Stir in the black bean sauce and minced chile. Set aside.

Clean cooked crab.  Set aside back shell.  Crack rest of crab to make eating easier and set aside.  Can also be completely cleaned.

Mince garlic and ginger together into a paste.

Set a wok or 5-6 quart pan on high heat; add oil.  When oil is hot, add garlic-ginger paste; stir until golden, 30-60 seconds.  Add Singapore Chile Sauce and crab; stir with a wide spatula until crab is hot and sauce is boiling, 3-4 minutes.  Arrange crab on a hot platter; lay crab-back shell onto crab pieces.  Garnish with cilantro.  Serve with rice.                    
Makes 2 servings.

*Found in a jar in Chinese sauce section.

Mexicali Chicken

This is a really tasty, really easy dish, followed by lots of compliments.  It was given to me by a friend who is originally from Germany.

Measurements are approximate.  I often use frozen chicken tenders from Costco.  They thaw out quickly, so I can make these without planning too far ahead.

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts   
1 package taco seasoning + 2 TB flour
oil to saute
1/2 cup of your favorite salsa 
3-4 TB peach jam, apple jelly, or other jam

Dust chicken breasts w/ taco seasoning-flour mix.  Brown in oil for 2-3 minutes on each side.
Add salsa and cook.  Stir in jam and cook until chicken is done.  

Serve with Mexican Rice and a green salad.

Sauerkraut Pork Chops

Tim, this is for you and anyone who enjoys German food.

When I was student teaching in Arizona, my supervising teacher would talk about this delicious meal she would often prepare.  I finally asked for the recipe.

2 large jars sauerkraut,* rinsed and drained      4-6 pork chops
½ chopped onion                                                          1/2 cup flour mixed with
2 Tbsp brown sugar                                                                  salt, pepper, and
2 Tbsp bacon fat                                                                        paprika
1 can of water                                                                   1/2 cup sour cream

Serve with mashed potatoes

Mix sauerkraut, onion, brown sugar, bacon fat, and water in a 4 qt pot.  Bring to a boil, then simmer for 1 ½ -2 hours.  (This makes the sauerkraut very mild and even some of those who think they don’t like sauerkraut may eat this.)

After about an hour of cooking, flour the pork chops.   Brown both sides in a little oil in skillet.

Drain the sauerkraut well.  Place into a 9 x 13 inch casserole, then put the browned pork chops on top.  Cover and bake  for about 1 ½ hours.  Pork chops should be fork tender by this time.  Remove them to a platter, drain liquid from sauerkraut and mix in sour cream.  Serve alongside pork chops with mashed potatoes, using the sauerkraut like gravy.

*It tasted best with the canned stuff from another era.  Choose a sauerkraut you like, whether it is in a jar or the fresh style from a deli.