Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The other baked sandwich square recipe

Okay, I was wrong. Bound to happen sooner or later. This recipe does NOT use frozen dough, it uses the "Sister Schubert" type rolls. Which you can get in 13x9 pans from Sysco. Had it for a family get-together last year and it is REALLY good. Really good.

B's Family's Baked Sandwich Rolls

(Except that they got the recipe out of the church cookbook. These instructions are verbatim from his aunt, so interpret.)

Ham and cheese Krystals (don't know where that name came from)
1/2 pound butter
3T. poppy seed
3T. prepared mustard
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 small onion chopped very fine

Mix spread ingredients together. Beat well. Slice rolls in half. Spread mix on top and bottom layers. Layer ham and cheeses. Bake 30 min at 400 degrees. Makes three pans. Freezes well. That temperature sounds a little hot to me for that extended amount of time.

3 packages party rolls (Paige used Sister Schubert in large aluminum pan from a wholesale grocer--I have not seen in regular grocery) I have used the little rolls in aluminum pans in the bread dept. They are not much larger than your thumb. Pepperidge Farm has some that are more round.
1 pound thinly sliced deli ham
6 oz. swiss cheese

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Baked Sandwich Squares

Last year (at one of the two times a YEAR my husband's family gets together) one of his cousins brought a dish with ham and cheese layered with yeast rolls, but the trick was that it used yeast dough from Sysco. I meant to get the recipe, forgot, and then had this recipe Sunday at homecoming at church and it is lovely. Not as good as the yeast roll thing (and I've emailed for the recipe and will share if I get it) but much more do-able...you don't have to track down a caterer friend or restaurant friend to get the dough. We ate a third of this before the nice people got out of church. That'll teach 'em.

Baked Ham & Cheese Squares

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 13x9 baking dish.

2 8-oz cans crescent rolls
1/2 pound sliced salami
1/2 pound sliced swiss or provolone cheese
1/2 pound sliced boiled ham
7 eggs
1 cup parmesan cheese

Unroll one can crescent roll dough into the bottom of the dish, pinching together to form a solid crust. Beat SIX eggs and add the parmesan cheese.

Layer the salami, cheese, egg and cheese mixture, and ham...in that order. Top with the remaining crescent roll dough, pinching to form a solid crust.

Beat the remaining egg and brush over the top. Cook for 30 minutes covered with foil, then 30 more minutes uncovered. If you use a glass dish you may need to cut down the cooking time...or cook the full time at 325.

Obviously, you can substitute any luncheon meats, and I've been looking at this since Sunday thinking: Roast beef and blue cheese. Since 1/2 pound blue cheese would be awfully strong for the masses, that would probably work using Swiss AND blue cheese. I'll let you know.

(P.S....I made these this weekend for the soccer/birthday party/volunteering/football/last pool party/shrimp boil marathon that was going on and they were SPECTACULAR. Hit of the party. I did add a tablespoon of Dijon mustard to the egg mixture.)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Shepherd's Pie

Fifty percent of the inmates loved this...that would be The Nice Kid and me. The other two don't eat food if it touches, so that pretty much rules out THIS. Their loss...this was so good the two of us ate it three times yesterday.

Shepherd's Pie

1-1/2 pounds cooked beef
1 package small carrots, cut in half long-ways
1 large white onion
1 can beef broth
8 russet potatoes
1 cup buttermilk
1 stick butter
1 package four-cheese mix

Use the beef you prefer...TNK likes hamburger. For this I used leftover sirloin tip roast, or stew meat would be good. Cook the meat until well-done and tender...season to taste. Set aside.

Heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet and add the diced onion and carrots. Cover and cook until tender. Add the cooked beef and the beef broth and heat to a simmer. Stir in a slurry of two tablespoons cornstarch in 1/2 cup cold water and heat through. Cover and set aside.

Wash potatoes well. Cut unpeeled potatoes into eighths, cover with cold water and cook until tender. Drain and return to pan with the stick of butter. Cover and let the butter melt; then add buttermilk and cheese and mash with a spoon until chunky and blended.

On a large ovenproof platter or in a 13x9 baking dish, spread the potatoes over the bottom, pushing the sides up a little higher to make a potato "bowl." Spoon the hot beef into the center of the potatoes, sprinkle with extra cheddar cheese if you like, and heat for 10 minutes in a 325 oven.

This was groaning good.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Chocolate cake in a cup

This is so lame. SO very lame...but it has been the hit of the weekend (and in all fairness? It IS good.)

My mom sent this; I'm guessing some recipe site sent it to her. The point was that maybe the kids would have fun with it, so this afternoon when The Nice Kid checked her email and found it, she decided it was too cool not to try. And it WORKED. It made a mess...it runs over in the microwave and we had to leave the cup in the sink to soak but for the effort involved? This is great. And the Wow! factor is cool.

Minute Chocolate Mug Cake

1 Coffee Mug, lightly sprayed with cooking oil
4 tablespoons flour (that's plain flour, not self-rising)
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons baking cocoa
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk
3 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional)
Small splash of vanilla

Add dry ingredients to mug and mix well. (The mug TNK used is slightly oversized, but nothing special.) Add the egg and mix thoroughly. Pour in the milk and oil and mix well. Add the chocolate chips if using (TNK couldn't find any so we didn't use them) and vanilla, and mix again. (If you have it, Madagascar vanilla would STAR here.) Put your mug in the microwave and cook for 3 minutes at 1000 watts (we have a small microwave and it took six minutes.) The cake will rise over the top of the mug, but that's okay. Allow to cool a little and tip out onto a plate if desired; we ate it out of the cup with a scoop of vanilla ice cream in the first bite space.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Chicken and Dressing...sort of

It's homecoming at church Sunday and since I don't GO to church (my mom takes my kids and I DON'T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT IT since I spent a large portion of my younger life in that church and it wasn't good) I'm sort of obligated to go to homecoming. Which means taking a LOT of food because...there's that thing about my kids. And how much they eat.

There used to be a tearoom in the town we lived in 20 years ago, and the house specialty was Poulet de Normandy. Now, I'm guessing if you had ASKED, they'd have told you Normandy was a big car manufactured by Ford, but the point is this worked. Really well with a cranberry salad and homemade yeast rolls. (And something else...but I'm blank.) So I think I'll make a grocery run tomorrow and bake up a dish of this. And then we can eat it all ourselves when we get to the dinner.

Poulet de Normandy

1 16 oz package stuffing mix...your preference, we use cornbread
1-1/2 cups chicken broth (or hot water with bouillon)
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2-1/2 cups chopped cooked chicken
2 eggs
1-1/2 cups milk
1 can cream of mushroom soup
Grated cheddar cheese

Combine the stuffing mix, butter and broth and set aside. Mix the onions, celery and mayonnaise well, then add it to the stuffing mix and mix well. Spread half the stuffing in a lightly greased 13x9 baking dish. Sprinkle with the chopped chicken, then layer with the remaining stuffing mix. Beat the eggs in the milk and pour over the casserole; refrigerate overnight. The next day, take the casserole out of the refrigerator at least two hours before cooking. Spread the top with the mushroom soup. Bake in a 325 degree oven for 45 minutes; sprinkle with the cheese and bake an additional 10 minutes.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Blue Cheese Slaw

Last night I had a roast in the oven, seasoned with Spicy Spaghetti Seasoning and smoked paprika. We had white beans, because I MEANT to make baked beans but I've been hauling mulch and was too tired to grill the ribs that the beans were supposed to go with.

So...beans and roast. That works. But the only fresh green thing in the refrigerator was a head of cabbage, so we had slaw. And it was SO good that we're having it again tonight. With roast beef sandwiches.

Blue Cheese Slaw
1/2 head cabbage
2 carrots (or a handful of small ones)
1 red onion
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon coarse ground mustard
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 to 3/4 cup blue cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Chop the cabbage, onion and carrots the way you do it...I use the slicer blade on my food processor. My mother puts it in a blender with water and then drains it. My nephew hand chops everything. Whisk mayo, mustards, vinegar and celery seed. Toss the cabbage and carrots with the dressing and blue cheese. Chill for an hour or so, to let the flavors make friends.

(A little aside here. I had a piece of the Point Reyes blue cheese I got for Christmas, frozen. I used it and while the taste was OUTSTANDING, if you're not a blue cheese person it might be too strong. So do the blue cheese to taste, depending on the quality of cheese you have.)

This was SO good.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Seriously Good Burgers

In the early 90's, when I was working on that graduate degree I don't have, the health craze of the moment was low-fat. Turns out low fat doesn't work for me, but I didn't know that at the time and since I was spending five or six hours a day in the physical education department, controlling my diet was no problem. I cut lower and lower until I was eating less than 10 grams of fat a day. I was hungry ALL the time, and losing muscle for no reason.

Later on, I realized that my particular body likes low carb. Fat and protein are my friends. At some point in time I hope to convince my MOUTH that IT likes low carb because right now? I'll kill a man over a loaf of good bread. Or pasta.

But a few things stayed around because they worked, and one of them is the hamburgers we eat. Most people have no idea what's in them...just because they taste just like hamburgers, texture and all. But they are a lot better for you.

Mushroom Burgers
1-1/2 pounds hamburger meat (chuck, sirloin, ground round: your choice)
8 ounces fresh mushrooms
1 clove garlic
1/4 Worcestershire (or Dale's if you're from around here)

Chop the garlic into 8-10 pieces. Put the rinsed mushrooms and the garlic in a food processor and process until it's finely chopped...scraping down the sides as necessary. Add about 1/4 cup hamburger meat and process thoroughly. Add the mushroom mixture to the remaining hamburger in a large bowl and use your hands to mix in the Worcestershire. Shape into patties (you DO know to put an indention in the center of the patty so it won't puff up, don't you?) and sprinkle with smoked paprika or R.L. Schreiber's Mesquite Seasoning. Let stand for 10-15 minutes, then grill to taste.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Hush puppies

The Big Boy kept insisting that the dealer who sent the fish left the skin on the portions to be grilled, and took it off the portions to be fried. I suggested that YOU DON'T FRY red snapper, but he was positive. So last night we took the last two small filets and fried them.

It was awful. TBB ate his, but I took one bite and quit. IT WAS FISHY. Waaay too fishy for me, although in fairness it's highly possible that my redneck self only eats fried catfish. (Redneck has nothing to do with it...that fish didn't taste good.)

What DID taste good were the hushpuppies. So good, in fact, that I didn't mind that hushpuppies were all I had for supper.

Really Good Hushpuppies
1-1/2 cups White Lily cornmeal mix
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 cup corn...I used leftover creamed, because that's what I had
1 large or 2 small peppers...I used banana because that's what was on the bush
2 eggs
Cayenne to taste
Frying oil

Mix everything together, adding the buttermilk to the desired consistency. I used about 3/4 cup...you want it thick enough to stay on the spoon when you scoop it up.

Heat frying oil to 350 degrees, and keep an eye on it. Too hot, the hushpuppies are raw inside; not hot enough and they're greasy. Using a teaspoon, scoop up a portion of batter. CAREFULLY lower that spoon to the surface of the oil and push the hushpuppy off with another spoon. If you drop the hushpuppy into the oil it will scatter off into smaller pieces that will burn. You want to slide the batter into the oil so it firms up immediately. The hushpuppies will float around, happily cooking in the oil and then on their own...they'll flip over. Cook them another couple of minutes, then scoop out onto a platter lined with a brown paper bag topped with paper towels. Serve with ketchup.

You won't even miss the fish.

(A note: This is best done outside, and in the South everyone has a fish cooker. That's a metal stand with four legs and a burner, that runs off a propane tank. The pan you cook in has a perforated liner, so that you just lift it out of the oil. Keeps the house from smelling like old oil the next day.)

Monday, September 1, 2008

Fresh Red Snapper

We told the kids this wasn't any good, and ate the entire thing ourselves. Luckily for them, there were smoked ribs left over from last night.

The Big Boy was in the Gulf last week, THANK YOU LORD. On business, but because he's such a salesman a lot of his work involves sports and food, and this dealer is a serious deep sea fisherman. So they got in a boat and went 50 miles out and fished all day. Came in, cleaned the fish, packed it on ice and brought it home to me the next day.

It doesn't get any better than this.

I opened the package thinking there was half a fish in there, but there was a half and three filets so the filets will show up tomorrow tonight. But tonight? Oh, y'all. We really ate it all.

Red Snapper with Salsa
1 whole red snapper filet
Cavender's All-Purpose Greek Seasoning
Smoked paprika
2-3 fresh tomatoes
1 small onion (I used a white, and it wasn't too strong)
1/2 cup green olives
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1 avocado
1 jalapeno, seeded or not your preference
2 limes

A couple of hours before dinner, season the filet with the Cavender's and paprika, put in a ziplock bag and squeeze out the air and put it back in the refrigerator. When you're ready to cook, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a baking dish with olive oil, place the fish in the dish :) and spray with olive oil. Bake to desired degree of doneness: I set the timer for 15 minutes, did another five and then another five and it was PERFECT.

I think I've mentioned that my dad sleeps half the day and is up all night, and we get strange gifts from late night infomercials. One of my things was one of those boxes that dices things with a push and it is AWESOME. Especially for salsas. It gets a lot more use than that AbLounger.

Dice the tomatoes, the onion, the olives (I just put them on the grid and push), the avocado and the jalapeno, and combine in a bowl. Add the chopped cilantro, and the juice of one lime. Stir well and leave to get friendly. Thinking about it, I didn't add salt but it didn't need it. Which is strange.

To serve, squeeze the juice of the other lime over the fish. Plate with the salsa spooned over the fish.

It says something, not a good thing, that the Aldi store here has some of the more exotic items to be found in this neck of the woods. And one of the lovely things it carries is bags of small frozen green beans. I melted three tablespoons butter and added 1/4 cup pecan meal and one diced elephant garlic. Browned it a little. Cooked the green beans six minutes in boiling water, drained them and then tossed them in the skillet with the nuts and garlic. Sea salt and fresh ground pepper.

We ate all of them, too.

I wish I had taken a picture. The salsa was lovely.