Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Chicken Noodle Casserole

Yeah, we already have a tuna noodle casserole on the site. But we made this the other night and it was SUPER DELICIOUS, so we're passing it on.

CHICKEN NOODLE CASSEROLE
12 oz. egg noodles, cooked and drained
2 10 oz. cans chunk chicken breast, drained (or the same amount of rotisserie or boiled chicken meat)
2 10 oz. cans cream of chicken soup
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup milk (or use water)
1 bunch green onions, finely chopped (or use half an onion, diced fine and sautéed until soft)
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1½ cups frozen peas and carrots
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
enough melted butter to moisten the breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 350° F. Spray a 9x13" baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine chicken, cream soup, mayonnaise, milk (or water), onions, cheese and frozen peas and carrots. Stir until combined, then gently stir in cooked noodles. Pour into baking dish. Combine breadcrumbs and butter and sprinkle over the top of the casserole.

Bake, uncovered, about 30-35 minutes or until edges are bubbly and top is golden brown. The cheese and mayo will sort of disappear into the cream of whatsit sauce, creating savory casserole goodness. You can also substitute other frozen green veggies for the peas and carrots if you prefer them, or if you don't happen to have peas and carrots in the freezer (we used a bag of frozen broccoli instead and it turned out fantastic).

Serves 6 happy people.

Source: shamelessly stolen and tweaked from the Internet.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Ärter med Fläsk (Pea Soup with Pork)

You may think you don't like pea soup. But if you've only ever had pea soup from a can, YOU HAVE NEVER HAD PEA SOUP. Make this once and you will never go back to the can.

In Sweden, Thursday is the traditional day to serve pea soup and pancakes. Or you could toss tradition out the window and make them any day you like.

ÄRTER MED FLÄSK
1 lb. (about 2 cups) dried yellow whole peas*
5 cups cold water
2 finely chopped medium onions
1 whole onion, peeled and studded with 2 or 3 cloves
1 lb. salt pork, most fat removed
1 t. leaf marjoram
1/2 t. thyme
salt (if needed) and pepper

Pick over dried peas, removing any foreign material, then wash in cold running water and place in a 2- to 3-quart pot. Cover with 5 cups cold water and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil briskly for 2-3 minutes, then turn off heat and let peas soak for an hour.

Skim off any pea husks that have risen to the surface. Cut the salt pork in pieces and add it, the whole onion, finely chopped onions, marjoram and thyme to the pot. Bring back to a boil, then immediately lower the heat and simmer with pot partially covered for 1¼ hours or until peas are very tender. Remove the whole onion. Be sure to taste before adding salt -- it may not need any. Serve with fresh ground pepper. You may also remove the salt pork and serve it separately with a bit of spicy brown mustard if you like.

* You can substitute yellow split peas, but skip the soaking process and use only 4 cups cold water.

Pickled Herring

I know you're all keen to find out how to make pickled herring from scratch. (And if you're not, I don't want to hear about it.) This is the recipe straight from Grandpa Eriksson. He didn't bother to give much information by way of proportions, but if you've ever looked over a jar of pickled herring, I'm pretty sure you can figure things out.

PICKLED HERRING
salt herring fillets
water
white vinegar
sugar
carrots
red onions
fresh root ginger
whole allspice
whole mustard seed

Soak salt herring in cold water 6 hours or overnight, changing the water every two hours. Drain herring, pat dry with paper towels and cut into neat bite-sized chunks.

Make a brine of about 4 parts water to 1 part vinegar (for a small batch: 1 quart water, ½ pint vinegar). Saturate brine with sugar (it should taste sweet). Bring brine to a boil, then allow it to cool completely. Get out a large, clean glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Cut carrots and onions into thin rounds. Slice ginger very thin and place a thin round at the bottom of the glass jar. Layer in herring chunks, allspice berries, carrots, onions and mustard seed; repeat until jar is full. Add brine to jar, completely covering herring, and pack down to make sure no air bubbles remain. Tighten lid and let herring pickle in the refrigerator for at least five days before eating.

When not scarfing down nommy silver fish, store in the fridge.

Contributor: Karl Eriksson

Monday, July 24, 2017

Kari Sue's Barbecue Sauce

It's barbecue season, so it's time to make barbecue sauce. Mom and Grandpa put this sauce together one summer years ago. Since Mom just makes it "to taste," there are few specific amounts in this recipe. Just fiddle with the ratios until it tastes right.

KARI SUE'S BARBECUE SAUCE
ketchup
some shakes of Worcestershire sauce
1 onion, blended to a paste
salt and pepper to taste
1-2 T. vegetable oil
brown sugar
a few shakes of liquid smoke

Put it all togetha. Slather it on ribs, chicken, or whatever's gone on the grill (it's even good on corn on the cob).

Contributor: Karin Buck

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Dutch Apple Puffs

Grandma Kest used to make these. Now you can too. And you'll have friends, family and total strangers following you around, shamelessly begging for more.

DUTCH APPLE PUFFS
1 cup warm water
1 envelope dry yeast
⅓ cup sugar
1 t. salt
1 egg
¼ cup margarine or butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ t. cinnamon
⅛ t. nutmeg
⅛ t. ground cloves
5 large cooking apples
1 to 2 quarts oil for deep frying

Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add sugar, salt, egg and oil and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add flour and spices. Beat another 3 minutes. Cover bowl and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, or until the batter doubles in bulk.

Core and peel apples; slice into thin rings (about ¼" thick). Dip rings into flour, then into yeast batter. Drop into hot oil (375° F) and fry until golden brown. Turn and fry on other side. Fish out puffs and let drain on paper towels.

While puffs are still hot, roll them in a bowl of powdered sugar. Put on serving plate and top with another dusting of powdered sugar. Serve warm.

Serves many.

Contributor: Catharina Kest, via Karin Buck

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Chicken-Corn Soup

For our occasional Soup Nights in fall, winter and early spring, I try to make at least one offering that can be enjoyed by people with dietary restrictions (in the past, our guests have been Type 2 diabetics, celiacs, vegans, and people with food allergies). Here's one I put together for a guest whose doctor had taken her off onions, garlic and dairy products. It takes some extra prep work because dairy, onions and garlic are in many, MANY prepared foods. Despite the ingredient restrictions, I think it turned out pretty tasty.

CHICKEN-CORN SOUP

Cashew cream:
Get a package of raw cashews (Trader Joe’s sells them), dump them in a bowl, cover with water and let sit in the fridge overnight. Blend cashews and water very thoroughly, until the mixture reaches the consistency of cream. This keeps in the fridge for about a week.

Chicken prep:
1 whole raw chicken
your favorite gluten-free soy sauce (I used San-J Tamari)

Roast the chicken using your preferred method, basting with gluten-free soy sauce for a flavor boost. Let it cool a bit, pick the meat from the bones and reserve for later, and make chicken broth from the carcass (taking care not to add onion or garlic to the broth). Now forge boldly ahead with the recipe!

Soup:
3 cups frozen corn kernels
1 quart homemade chicken broth (see above)
2 T. Nucoa or other dairy-free margarine, or use oil
4 T. cashew cream (see above) or other dairy-free cream substitute
2 t. cumin seed, freshly toasted in a dry pan, then ground in a mortar
A good dash of nutmeg
A couple good dashes of cayenne pepper
Salt and fresh-ground pepper to taste
Reserved chicken meat (see above)

Additionals/optionals:
cooked crumbled bacon (check that the bacon is gluten-free -- all bacon should be, but sometimes cross-contamination occurs in processing)
chopped chives (NOTE: some folks who can't eat onions also can't eat chives, so keep 'em separate)

In a medium stockpot, melt margarine. Add corn, chicken stock, cumin, nutmeg, cayenne and pepper and let it simmer until the corn is cooked. Transfer in batches to a blender and blend about 4 minutes, or until it’s really velvety smooth. Return to the pot and add chicken meat and cashew cream, and heat through. Salt to taste. Serve with bacon and chives on the side for diners to garnish as desired.

Feeds many.

The freshly-toasted and ground cumin and soy sauce give this soup a great savory note that offsets the sweetness of the corn and cashew cream. In fact, if I were to do this again I'd add more cumin, but try it this way first, then adjust to your taste.

By the way, guests who didn't have dietary restrictions also OM NOM NOMmed this soup until it was gone, so really, it's good.

Contributor: Suzanne Houghton

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Creamy Pumpkin Soup

I can't help it; it's fall! You don't have to have made it to the Autumnal Equinox to declare fall; the weather does it for you. (Well, that and Starbucks' annual unveiling of the Pumpkin Spice Latte.)

CREAMY PUMPKIN SOUP

3 cups chicken stock
¾ t. salt
1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree
½ cup chopped onion
¼ t. thyme
1 clove garlic, minced
2 whole black peppercorns
¼ cup heavy whipping cream
fresh parsley to garnish

In a saucepan, heat stock, salt, pumpkin, onion, thyme, garlic and peppercorns. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer uncovered 30 minutes or until onions are tender.

Puree the soup in batches, 1 cup at a time, using a blender or food processor (immersion blenders don't usually take care of all the onions, and this is a cream soup).

Return soup to saucepan, bring back to a boil, and simmer uncovered another 30 minutes, or until the soup has thickened. Stir in heavy cream, pour into bowls and garnish with fresh parsley.

Serves 4.

Shamelessly stolen from the Internet and tweaked by Suzanne Houghton. Because that's how I roll.