Monday, December 11, 2017

Scotch Eggs

A very popular dish in Japan is Scotch Eggs.  It is a Scottish dish, but the Japanese have adopted it as their own.  It is basically meat-  ground pork (pork is the most used and popular meat in Japan) wrapped around a hard-boiled egg, then fried. Sausage is not available in Japan, but this is made with sweet (as opposed to spicy) sausage in Scotland. The Japanese just use ground pork.  These little jewels are delicious and are a fun surprise when you cut into them.

Here, the elders and Remi are forming and dipping the scotch eggs, preparing them to be fried.

Imi frying the scotch eggs.  Notice the special extra long chopsticks used for frying.

Scotch Eggs  
1 1/2 lbs sweet sausage or ground pork
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
Pepper and Salt (If using ground pork- not necessary if using bulk sausage)

4 peeled hard-boiled eggs
flour on a plate
1 beaten egg in a bowl with a little bit of water added
Panko or other bread crumbs on a plate
Oil for frying, if you are frying
  Mix the meat with the Worcestershire sauce.  I just sprinkle the Worcestershire sauce on the meat in the tray the meat comes in.  Then I mix it with my hands, then flatten the meat back out into the tray and cut it fourths.  Divide the meat into four equal parts.  Shape each 1/4 around a hard-boiled egg by flattening the meat in a circle, then completely enclosing the egg.  Dip the balls into flour, then egg, then panko bread crumbs, coating well with each.  When well- coated fry the balls in hot oil or bake in the oven at 375 until lightly browned- about 25 minutes (much fewer calories, but not how it is traditionally done.)  Makes 4 scotch eggs.
Here are some pictures of some I made at home in America.  I used sausage and baked them in the oven.  They turned out really good!

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Chunky Spaghetti Sauce

I love this recipe for spaghetti sauce!  It is so delicious!  My favorite way to make it is in an enameled cast iron pan on the stovetop, but it also works great in a crockpot if you are going to be away from home all day.  It makes 4 quarts of spaghetti sauce- one for now and three for the freezer.  I LOVE recipes like that!  One quart is about right for about 3/4 -1 lb. of spaghetti or other pasta.

Chunky Spaghetti Sauce
Brown together in an enameled cast iron pot (or large fry pan if you are going to use a slow cooker):
1 1/2- 3 lbs. sweet sausage and/ or ground beef (you can use a mixture.  We like it with all sausage and like to use the full 3 lbs.)
1 large onion, diced
1 large green pepper, diced
When browned, add crushed or minced garlic and brown.
Drain the grease through a colander, then put all back in the pot or transfer to the crockpot.  Add:
2 jars or cans spaghetti sauce of choice
1- 28 oz can crushed or diced tomatoes (or one 14 oz. can of each)
1 can tomato paste
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 T. Italian seasoning
1 pkg. spaghetti seasoning
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. beef bouillion

Cook on low for several hours.  About an hour or 2 or 3 before you want to eat, add:
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced
1-2 jars artichoke hearts, mostly drained
1 can olives, drained and sliced

Continue cooking until the mushrooms are cooked and all is blended together.
Fill three quart jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.  When cooled, put in the freezer (or share.)

Serve over cooked, hot pasta with lots of grated Parmesan cheese.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Pasta with Creamy Mushroom Sauce

Pasta with Creamy Mushroom Sauce

Need a delicious dinner in 20 minutes?  Here's the recipe for you, and it's delicious!  I got it from Cooking Without Recipes site.  That site just gives ingredient ideas and cooking methods- amounts and ingredients can vary according to taste.  I love that kind of cooking!
Pasta with Creamy Mushroom Sauce
1 lb pasta  (the site suggested orecchiette, which I love) I've used ravioli stuffed with chicken and cheese. That was good because it added a little bit of meat to the dish.   It was so delicious!)
Mushrooms, sliced  However many and varieties you like.  I've used a white button and creminis
Butter, a hunk- as much or little as you like
Cream (or you could use half n half)
Garlic (opt)
Chives or Parsley for garnish, opt.

In a large pot, boil water with a lot of salt. Cook pasta to el dente

In a large skillet, brown some butter and add mushrooms and garlic if desired. You may also add garlic salt. When browned and softened, add some cream to make a nice creamy sauce.  Drain the pasta and add the hot, cooked pasta into the sauce.  Season with some red pepper flakes and salt.  Add lots of parmesan cheese.  Stir and serve hot.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Grilled Chicken Caprese

This is a delicious, low-calorie main dish:
Grilled Chicken Caprese
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Mix some balsamic vinegar and oil to make a dressing, or buy a balsamic vinegar dressing.
1 box grape tomatoes, halved
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 cup fresh basil, torn
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Fresh mozzarella slices

Place chicken in a gallon-sized zip bag.  Add Balsamic and oil or salad dressing to cover.  Marinate for 4-24 hours.
In a bowl, combine tomatoes, garlic, basil, olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Add salt and pepper to taste.
Grill the marinated chicken on a grill at medium heat.  Close the lid and cook about 7 minutes per side, depending on thickness of the meat.  During the last two minutes, put a slice of Mozzarella on each chicken breast.  Top each breast with the tomato/ basil mixture.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Sister Smith's Oatmeal Cookies

Each time we traveled to Yamagata for interviews with President Smith, Sister Smith brought all of the missionaries delicious oatmeal cookies.  She took them with her on her travels and gave two to each missionary.  That's 200 cookies!  The elders really looked forward to Sister Smith's Oatmeal Cookies.  They are just the perfect oatmeal cookie.  I finally asked her for the recipe.  I am so glad to get it, and thought you might like it, too. This is the perfect time of year for oatmeal cookies.

Sister Smith's Oatmeal Cookies
1 1/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
3 cups oats
Raisins or chocolate chips, opt.  (She never put in either)

Bake at 375 for 8-9 minutes (depending on size.)

Monday, June 19, 2017

Healthy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups oats (old fashioned or quick oats)
  • 2 and 2/3 cups flour (white, whole-wheat, or a mixture of both
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup olive oil or butter (I used 1/4 cup applesauce with 1/4 cup olive oil)
  • 6 ounces chocolate chips
Combine the oats, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, mix the eggs, milk, and oil.
Stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture until moistened. Mix the chocolate chips in.
Fill muffin cups 2/3 full with the batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-17 minutes, or until tops are light golden. I made mini muffins too and baked them for 8 minutes.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Corn Pasta Salad

This salad was so yummy I didn't even get a picture of it before it was gone. 
  • 1 lb bag or 4 cups miniature farfelle pasta, cooked, rinsed with cold water, and mostly dry
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans corn 
  • 1 large avocado, diced
  • 3-5 green onions, chopped (I like to slightly saute mine)
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped jalapeno (I did not add this, my kids don't like spicy food)
  • 6-8 strips hardwood smoked bacon, cooked, cooled and crumbled (We don't love bacon, but 4 strips was a perfect addition)
  • 1/2 cup Cotija cheese (or queso fresco or feta -- add cheese to preference (we like 1/2 cup)
  • 1 can black beans, drained (or 1 1/2 cups cooked beans if you make your own)
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil Mayo
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice and 1/4 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha or hot sauce
  • Pinch of salt and ground black pepper
  • Instructions
    1. Corn: if using regular canned corn: heat a large cast iron skillet on medium high heat for 3-4 minutes or until very hot. Drain corn and place in a single layer and cook for about 5 minutes stirring once in between or until browned. Avoid stirring too often as this will keep the corn from getting a good roast.
    2. Meanwhile prep the veggies: chop the avocado into small pieces, chop the green onions, coarsely chop the cilantro, very finely chop the jalapeno, and cook then crumble the bacon. Crumble the cheese. Add black beans.
    3. In a large bowl combine the cooled pasta, cooled corn, avocado, onions, cilantro, jalapeno, bacon, and cheese. **If you don't plan on eating this in one sitting and immediately after making, don't add the bacon, cheese, or avocado. Add those in separately right before enjoying.**

    4. Toss together.
    5. In a small bowl combine all of the dressing ingredients and whisk together until completely combined.
    6. Toss with the salad and enjoy!
      The original source was from I've changed quite a bit though. Hers is more of a corn salad and we like more pasta in ours.