I took the classic home chili recipe of 1 lb. hamburg + 1 can of tomatoes +1 can of kidney beans and kicked it up several notches to take this simple dish to a whole new level.
1 1/2 lbs sirloin steaks
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 (28 ounce) can Rotel tomatoes, drained
2 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans, undrained
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 cup chili powder (I use Ancho chili powder)
1 tablespoon cumin powder
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- Cut steak into roughly 1/2″ dice. (This is easier to do if you put your thawed steak into the freezer for about 30 minutes first.).
- In a large saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat; add steak, stirring until lightly brown all over. Add onion and garlic, stirring to prevent garlic from browning. Heat until onion is translucent.
- Stir in chili powder and cumin. Add drained tomatoes and undrained pintos, bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes or until heated through and flavors develop. Stir in sherry and cilantro.
- Serve over hot rice, and garnish as desired with sour cream, shredded cheese and thinly sliced scallions.
This is a home-grown recipe that I’ll definitely do again; the tortellini has a wonderfully rich flavor reminiscent of dim sum.
4 filet mignons
Montreal steak seasoning
extra virgin olive oil
2 T butter
1 pkg. Bertelloni sweet sausage tortellini
1 clove garlic, minced
1 shallot., minced
2 T butter
2 T white balsamic vinegar
1/2 fresh tomato, minced
freshly grated parmesan cheese
- Cook tortellini according to package directions. Drain, put in a bowl, cool, and drizzle with a little olive oil to keep them separate. Store in fridge until ready to use.
- Pat filet mignons dry and season liberally on both sides with the Montreal steak seasoning. Let rest and come to room temperature for at least 15 minutes, preferably 30.
- Heat cast iron skillet for several minutes on high, add several swirls of extra virgin olive oil and quickly sear and brown the steaks, cooking several minutes per side until desired doneness. Remove to a plate; cover with foil to keep warm while they rest.
- Reheat cast iron skillet several minutes, add 2 swirls of olive oil, heat briefly, then add 2 T butter, lower heat slightly, and add the shallot and garlic. Stir continuously for about a minute, then add balsamic vinegar, stir for about a minute, then stir in the minced tomato, stir and heat for about a minute.
- Carefully stir in the tortellini, turning carefullly so as not to break them up, but enough so they get coated on all sides. Let rest long enough to slightly brown, about a minute or so per side. Drizzle any accumulated juices from the plate the steaks are resting on over the tortellini.
- Plate the steaks, and serve tortellini as a side, sprinkling liberally with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Someone once defined eternity as two people and a Christmas ham. When Rod and I received not one, not two, but three Christmas hams in one week, I came up with this recipe, which has since become one of our post-holiday favorites.
8 ounces uncooked egg noodles
1 lb. diced leftover cooked ham
2 stalks celery, sliced thin
1 small onion, diced
2 tablespoons oil
1 can cream of chicken and mushroom soup OR cream of mushroom soup OR cream of chicken soup
1 can mushroom pieces
1/2 cup chicken bouillon or broth
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried marjoram
5 dashes Tabasco sauce (optional)
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and pour into large mixing bowl.
- Saute celery and onions in skillet with oil over low heat until vegetables are transluscent, not browned, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir into cooked noodles.
- Stir in ham, soup, mushrooms, boullion or broth, cheese, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, marjoram and Tabasco, if using. Pour mixture into an ovenproof casserole dish.
- In a small dish, stir together melted butter or margarine and bread crumbs until well blended. Sprinkle between your fingers over the surface of the casserole.
- Bake casserole in oven preheated to 350 degrees for 40 minutes.
I had my friend Julia over for dinner this week when the weather was cold and she was in need of some good old fashioned comfort food. What could be more comforting than a perfectly braised beef pot roast with gravy and veggies? Don’t turn your nose up at the dry onion soup mix – there’s a reason it’s been the secret to pot roast rave reviews for so many years. Take Mikey’s advice: “Try it – you’ll like it”.
3 to 3 1/2 lb. boneless chuck roast, trimmed of excess fat & blotted dry
salt & freshly ground pepper
2 ribs of celery cut in 1″ chunks
1 onion cut into wedges
2 or 3 carrots cut in 1″ chunks
2 or 3 parsnips, peeled & cut in 1″ chunks
4 large red potatoes, cut into 8 pieces (peeled or unpeeled)
1 15-oz. can beef broth
2 bay leaves
1 pkg. dry onion soup mix
Sprinkle the roast liberally with equal parts salt, freshly ground pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and paprika.
Put the vegetables into the slow cooker with the potatoes on top. Put the meat on top of the potatoes. Add the bay leaves and sprinkle the onion soup mix over all. Pour the can of beef broth over the meat.
Cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours. Serve straight from the cooker and ladle the juices over each plate.
If you’re trying to figure out what to serve for Christmas dinner, this would be spectacular. Glo says this is easy to do and unbelievably delicious and impressive.
Olive Oil cooking spray
8 celery ribs rinsed
1 ( 3-4 ) rib roast ( 41/2 Lbs. approx. )
TIP: Buy the small end, as it will be more tender and will have less fat!
2 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp coarsely ground pepper
1/4 C onion, diced
2 tsp chopped garlic
1 14-oz. can beef broth
16 oz. fresh whole mushrooms (rinsed)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Coat 9 x1 3 baking dish with cooking spray.
Cut celery into 7 inch ribs. Lay across center of dish; place roast on top. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, onions and garlic.
Add broth and mushrooms around roast. Bake 2 1/2 hours or until internal thermometer reaches 145 for medium-rare up to 170 for well-done. Let stand for 10-15 minutes before slicing and serve.
Note: The Au Jus is terrific!
This classic recipe is from a cookbook I owned back in the early 70′s and I’ve used it regularly ever since. When I serve it to guests who have told me in they don’t like casseroles, I simply tell them it’s Greek lasagna and they wolf it down.
If you can’t find ground lamb in your meat department, and your butcher won’t grind it for you, use some partially frozen lamb shoulder or leg steaks and grind them using either the meat grinder attachment for your Kitchen Aid mixer or pulse in a food processor until it’s the consistency of ground beef.
2 T butter or margarine
1 C finely chopped onion
1 1/2 lb. ground lamb
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
dash of pepper
2 8-oz. cans tomato sauce
2 eggplants (1-lb., 4 oz. size), washed & dried
1/2 C butter or margarine
2 T butter or margarine
2 T flour
1/2 tsp salt, dash of pepper
2 C milk
1/2 C grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 C grated Cheddar cheese
2 T dry bread crumbs
Make the meat sauce. In hot butter in 3 1/2 qt. Dutch oven, saute onion, meat and garlic, stirring until browned, about 10 minutes. Add herbs, spices and tomato sauce; bring to boiling, stirring. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 1/2 hour.
Halve unpared eggplants lengthwise, and slice crosswise, 1/2″ thick. Place in bottom of broiler pan; sprinkle lightly with salt; brush lightly with melted butter. Broil, 4″ from heat, 4 minutes per side or until golden.
Make cream sauce: In medium saucepan, melt butter. Remove from heat, stir in flour, salt and pepper. Add milk gradually. Bring to boiling, stirring until mixture is thickened. Remove from heat. In small bowl, beat eggs with wire whisk. Beat in some hot cream-sauce mixture; return mixture to saucepan; mix well, set aside. Preheat oven to 350.
To assemble casserole: In bottom of a shallow 2-quart baking dish (12″ x 7 1/2″ x 2″), layer half of eggplant; sprinkle with 2 T each grated parmesan and cheddar cheeses. Stir bread crumbs into meat sauce. Spoon evenly over eggplant in casserole, then sprinkle with 2 T each of Parmesan and cheddar cheeses. Layer the rest of the eggplant, overlapping, as before.
Pour cream sauce over all. Sprinkle top with remaining cheeses. Bake 35 to 40 minutes, or until golden-brown and top is set. If desired, brown top a little more under broiler, about 1 minute. Cool slightly to serve. Cut in squares.
Makes 12 servings
This is an easy, do-ahead, delicious pork roast, perfect for entertaining. I like it because I can pulse everything for the rub in the food processor, rub it on the pork, cover, refrigerate, and cook at my convenience.
1 Boneless pork roast, 2 to 3 lbs.
3 T softened butter
3-oz. finely chopped prosciutto
3 T finely minced garlic
3 T freshly minced rosemary (or 1 1/2 T dried)
freshly ground black pepper
2 T freshly grated parmesan cheese
2 C dry white wine
- Mix together butter, prosciutto, garlic, rosemary, and black pepper by pulsing in the small bowl of a food processor and set aside (can be made in advance and refrigerated up to one day, but warm to room temperature before proceeding).
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Cut slits about an inch or so long and a half inch or so deep all over the top of the roast.
- Spread the butter mixture over the roast, working to get it into the slits you made earlier – very important.
- (At this point you can wrap roast in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight and up to 1 day). Put prepared roast in a roasting pan, pour wine slowly over it, and cook for about 1 1/2 hours, depending on the size of the roast, basting about every 30 minutes or so with pan drippings. I like to pull it when it reaches an internal temp of 135 and then let it rest under foil for about 15 minutes before serving.
Jill and I did a Hawaiian-themed dinner party one evening and included these ribs as an appetizer course. Steve and Mary Ann cooked them to perfection and they disappeared almost immediately.
3 lbs. spareribs, cut in half lengthwise
1 C sugar
1/2 C soy sauce
2 T Hoi Sin sauce
1/2 t Chinese five spices powder
1 T Kosher salt
1/8 t red food coloring
- Slit the hard bone and score spareribs. Parboil, rinse and drain well.
- Combine marinade ingredients and marinate meat overnight in the refrigerator. Turn and mix occasionally.
- Smoke in a smoker for 2 hours, basting occasionally with sauce.
Lazy cool autumn Sunday afternoons are the perfect time to fire up the grill, and few meats are easier and tastier than grilled pork loin. The only plant in my garden I have never managed to kill is my rosemary bush, which is about 10 years old and spans about 5 feet across. This was from a dinner club menu when Rod and I hosted one year, so it serves about 10.
2 3-lb. pork loins
2 t salt
1 t pepper
1/4 C coarse grained Dijon mustard
1/2 C EVOO
2 C soft breadcrumbs
5 T finely chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 C chopped garlic
Garnishes: sliced fresh pears, fresh rosemary sprigs
- Sprinkle pork loins evenly with salt and pepper.
- Stir together mustard and 1/4 C EVOO; spread evenly over pork. Stir together remaining oil,, breadcrumbs, rosemary and garlic.
- Light one side of the grill, heating to medium high heat (350 to 400); leave the other side unlit. Place pork over lit side and grill, covered with grill lid, 8 minutes on each side or until seared. Remove pork from grill. Press breadcrumb mixture evenly over the top of each pork loin.
- Grill over unlit side of the grill, covered with grill lid, 35 to 40 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted in t part registers 155. Let rest 10 minutes before slicing. Garnish with slices of fresh pears and rosemary sprigs if desired.
I love the aroma of slow simmering foods on a cool Autumn afternoon. This is pure comfort food.
3 T EVOO
3 onions, chopped
3 14-oz. cans petite diced tomatoes w/juices
5 carrots, halved lengthwise & sliced into 1/4″ slices
4 lbs. beef short ribs
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 C dry red wine
2 t dried basil, crumbled
1 t dried thyme, crumbled
salt and pepper to taste
cooked egg noodles as an accompaniment
2 T minced parsley for garnish
- Season the ribs liberally with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a dutch oven over medium high heat until hot but not smoking. Brown the ribs, in batches if necessary, and tranfer them to a platter using tongs once they are browned.
- In the oil remaining in the pan heat the onion and garlic until soft, about 2 or 3 minutes, being careful to adjust the heat to prevent them from browning. Sprinkle lightly with salt to help them soften.
- Return the ribs and any accumulated juices from the platter to the pan. Stir in the tomatoes with their juice, the wine, carrots, basil, thyme and salt and pepper to taste.
- Bring to a boil, cover tightly, remove from stovetop and place in a preheated 350 oven and braise for 2 1/2 hours.
- To serve, arrange noodles on a platter, top them with the short ribs and carrots, and garnish with the chopped parsley.