Showing posts with label Side Dishes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Side Dishes. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Scalloped Potatoes

Fall is coming, we can feel it in the morning air.  Our days are still hot here in Redding, Ca. but there is a promise of Summer's end and it will soon be OK to bring on those wonderful comfort foods. Well, what is more comfortable than Scalloped Potatoes?  I have been making my scalloped potatoes in the microwave since I got my first one, in maybe 1977.  Yes, that was a long time ago!  The original recipe came in a little booklet that came with the microwave.  Well, I have no idea where that little book went so I will try to come up with a 'recipe' for you - since I have just made mine from memory for all these years.  I usually add cheese to my potatoes, once they are done but you don't have to in order to get that yummy, comfy taste.  You can serve this as a  side dish or add leftover ham and make it a main dish.  

                              SCALLOPED POTATOES

4-6 medium baking potatoes, washed and peeled (sometimes I  leave the peels on)
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons dry chopped onion (or 1 small onion chopped)
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk
1 cup med. sharp cheddar cheese (optional)

Slice potatoes thin, about 1/4” thick.  In a large buttered, microwavable, casserole dish I split the ingredients into 3 layers - potatoes sprinkled with butter, salt and pepper,onion and flour.  Pour the milk over the top and stir just to mix it a bit.  Place casserole on a dish in microwave and cook on high and uncovered for about 8 minutes or until hot.  The large dish and the plate under is because this may bubble over and who wants the mess. Stir the potatoes and then microwave for about 30 minutes more, stirring every 8-10 minutes. Check the potatoes for doneness.  If you are adding the cheese, do it now and stir it into potatoes.  This is a good recipe to make a small amount or to make larger amounts.  Just adjust the ingredient amounts to suit your desires.  As it is, it should serve 4-6.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Oven Roasted Yams

John and I both really like yams and they are so good for you.  This is an easy way to fix them in the oven.  They taste so great with anything.  I add the onion but if you don't like onion, just leave it out.  The little sprinkle of chili powder just adds a bit of extra flavor and contrast.  If you are lucky enough to find the small Yams leave those skins on.

                               Oven Roasted Yams

1 large or 3 small Yams (orange sweet potatoes)
1 Onion
1 Tablespoon Butter
1 Tablespoon Canola Oil (any cooking oil will do)
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 - 2 teaspoons Chili Powder

If your Yam is large you should probably peel it, just because the peel can be a little thick.  If your yams are small, the peel should be thin and you won’t have to peel them - just wash them well.  Chunk the Yam and the Onion into bite size pieces.  Line a cookie sheet (one with sides is best) with foil.  Put your yams and onions onto the foil.  Sprinkle them with the Oil, Salt and Pepper and the Chili Powder.  Toss them and add the Butter to the pan (you can melt it - or not).  Bake in a 400˚ oven for 20 minutes.  Stir everything up and put them back in the oven for another 20 minutes.  Check to see if they are done to your liking.  They should be a little caramelized and slightly crunchy.  

Serves 2


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Grammy's Homemade Applesauce

When I think of the fresh local apples being picked in our area, I think of homemade applesauce.   I especially like to serve fresh applesauce as a side dish with pork.  I make it in small batches because it's so easy to make.  If you have lots of apples and want lots of applesauce, go ahead and make a big batch.  It is so good in applesauce cakes and cookies.  You can also just eat it for a simple dessert.

It's hard to say there is an exact recipe for applesauce because there are so many things to consider.  First you have the kinds of apples, there are so many.  I try to use local produce when I can and I choose a nice crisp and semi-tart apple.  Some apples are not really juicy so you may need a little more water to help break them down.  Some are really tart so you may need to add a little more sugar to suit your taste.  I like mine with chunks, you may like yours smooth.  I usually use granulated sugar but you might like to try brown sugar.  I like cinnamon in mine but that is strictly optional.  Do try this simple and old fashioned applesauce.  You will be surprised at how easy and delicious it is.

 Grammy’s Homemade Applesauce

4 - 5 Apples, your choice of kind (I like crisp and tart and flavorful, like Gala, Fuji, or Gravenstein. Free is best but cheap is the next choice.

1/4  to 1/2 cup Water 
1 tablespoon Lemon Juice 
1 or 2 tablespoons Sugar  (I use granulated sugar but brown sugar is good too)
1/4 or 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon, optional
Wash, quarter, core and peel apples.  I like to cook the apples in a deep flat pan, so I will be able to smash them in the pan with a fork when they are done. Add the Water to the pan and cover with a lid.  Cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes or until the apples have softened.  
Remove the lid and begin smashing the apples with a fork, I like mine chunky. You can use a potato masher if you like.  Add in the Sugar, to taste, you make it as sweet or tart as you like. Add in the Cinnamon, also to your taste.   

Makes 4 servings

Choose your apples.

Quarter apples.

Peel and core apples.

Carve faces in apples.
(Just for fun!) 

Cut apples into small

Add water and lemon
juice.  Cover and cook.

Smash with fork.  Add
sugar and cinnamon.

A yummy bowl of sauce.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Cilantro in Brown Rice

I really like the flavor of cilantro.  If you're not a fan, you can always use flat leaf parsley.  I enjoy rice with a lot of dishes but especially Mexican food.  This is a nice alternative to the usual Mexican Rice.  Brown rice takes longer to cook but I think it is worth the time to get that yummy nutty taste.  You can always add more jalapeno if you like more spice.  Give this recipe a try and let me know what you think.

                                        Cilantro in Brown Rice

1 cup Brown Rice
2 cups Water
1 tablespoon Lime Juice
1 tablespoon Canola Oil
1/2 medium White Onion, diced
1 tablespoon Fresh Jalapeno, chopped fine
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro, chopped

In a medium saucepan, combine everything - except the chopped Fresh Cilantro.  Simmer on low heat with a lid on, for approximately 50 minutes.  When rice is done, stir in the Cilantro.  Let sit, with the lid on, for 10 minutes. Toss the rice and enjoy.

Serves 4

*You can use long grain white rice in this recipe but cook it for 20 minutes.  

*When you get to the final minutes of cooking rice, check to be sure there is still liquid in the saucepan.  Add a tiny bit more if necessary.

*For a nice presentation, press rice into a small bowl.  Turn it out onto a plate and top with salsa, and a little sour cream and chopped cilantro.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Creamed Potatoes and Peas

When I was growing up Creamed Potatoes and Peas was something my family ate with fish.  Sometimes my Mom would make them from scratch, using fresh picked small potatoes and fresh picked and shelled peas.  But usually it was made with canned potatoes and canned peas.  I changed that to the frozen peas years ago and the only cooking the peas get is a warm up in the cream sauce.  They stay nice and green and so sweet and flavorful.  I still have a hard time cooking fish without yummy creamed potatoes and peas to go right along side of the fish.  I hope you will give them a try and either bring back some memories or make some new ones.  In this photo I am showing my creamed potatoes next to a nice mild white fish that has been dipped in a mixture of 1 egg, 1 tablespoon water and 1/4 teaspoon salt.  Then it is covered with Panko ( Japanese bread crumbs) and then it is fried in a little vegetable or Canola oil.

                 Creamed Potatoes and Peas

1 15 oz. can Small Whole White Potatoes, sliced
2 cups Milk
3 tablespoons Water
3 tablespoons Corn Starch
1 1/2 cups frozen Petite (or small) Peas
1 tablespoon Butter (or margarine)
Salt and Pepper to taste

Place sliced potatoes into a medium sauce pan.  Add milk and over a medium low heat bring the milk to a simmer.

Mix water and cornstarch in a small bowl.  While stirring, slowly add the cornstarch mixture to the milk and potatoes.  Add frozen peas and bring up to a simmer.  You want this to come almost to a boil, so it will thicken to a thick sauce or gravy consistency. 
Once it is thick, add butter, salt and pepper.  

Serves 4